Summer is right around the corner. And that’s great news for your dog. It means they’ll have more time to play and run around outside. However, keeping your dog cool in summer is extremely important. After all, you don’t want them to suffer a heat stroke, the signs for which are:
- Your dog has a high temperature (above 103 ° F or 39° C)
- Excessive drooling
- Excessive panting or breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Muscle tremors
- Hard time keeping their balance
To avoid this horrible experience, there are certain ways to keep your dog cool in the harsh summer heat. By doing the things mentioned below, it will allow you and your dog to spend a lot of time enjoying the beauty and fun these summer months have to offer.
Buy a Puppy Pool
A simple, but effective option to keep your pup cool is buying a puppy pool. It will offer your dog a place to cool him or herself down for when the heat gets a little too much. For some dogs, cooling down in a pool isn’t their kind of thing; in this case, it still can act as a huge water bowl for the pups that don’t like getting their feet wet. You can even join in and get inside the pool yourself. Let’s be honest, there’s nothing better than summer days inside a pool.
However, make sure to clean it out after every use. If you don’t, the water will become absolutely disgusting and will do more harm than good for your dog. A simple rinse and replacement of the water will be fine.
To help reduce the heat’s effect on your dog, you should replace a part of their diet with some wet food. See, wet food is a good secondary source of hydration for your dog. Its watery base can help a dog get the necessary amount of water needed, especially, for dogs that tend to drink too little.
Although, if your dog’s on a strictly dry food diet, don’t just switch entirely to wet food. It’s important to ease them into the wet food or just add some to the top of the dry food. A quick switch could lead to digestive issues such as diarrhea.
If you decide switching to a wet food diet is the right move for your dog, it should be a 7-10 day process. First, do 75% dry food and 25% wet food for a few days; next, do 50% of each for a couple days, then, 75% wet food and 25% dry food for few more, and finally, 100% wet food.
Early Morning or Nighttime Walks/Playtimes
Avoiding the hottest times of the day is obviously essential to keeping your dog cool in summer. Therefore, the early morning and evening are perfect for your pup’s daily exercise. It will keep them cool and they will still be able to enjoy the benefits of a summer day.
Now, this is problematic for some owners who just don’t have the time to walk their dog during these times. In this case, hire a dog walker. We highly recommend Ted Carlson Professional Dog Training and Walking Services if you live nearby Mandeville LA or you know somebody who does:)
Honestly, it really is key to avoid the hottest parts of these summer days for your dog’s daily exercise.
However, if you have no other option but to battle that harsh noon heat for your dog’s daily walks and playtimes, there are certain things you can do to help your dog:
- Invest in a collapsing water bowl that you can carry on their walks.
- Avoid hot pavement or get booties for your dog’s feet.
- Give them a wet towel to lie on.
- Try to stay in the shade as much as possible.
- Buy a dog cooling pad
- Offer them an ice pack
- Get a dog cooling vest
Frozen Dog Treats
Making frozen dog treats is a fun way of keeping your dog cool in the summer. Of course, it helps that your dog will absolutely love them.
To help get you started, here’s an example of a frozen dog treat, peanut butter pup-sicles, and everything you need to make them.
Peanut Butter Pup-sicles
- 1 cup of peanut butter, it’s better if the peanut butter is unsalted and unsweetened (make sure the peanut butter doesn’t contain xylitol, it’s deadly to dogs)
- A mashed half-ripe banana
- Water as needed
In a mixing bowl, mix the peanut butter with a little water or half a mashed banana. (Both the water and the banana will help speed up the freezing process)
Use Kong-style rubber toys that have a place where you can stuff the mixture.
Stuff the mixture into the toys. Freeze the toys for several hours. And now you have a cool, fun treat for your dog during those hot summer days.
Make Sure Your Dog’s Properly Groomed
If your dog has long fur, it’s important to keep their coat mat and tangle free. This will allow air to flow freely against your dog’s skin, therefore, keeping them cool from a nice breeze. If you don’t, the air will get trapped in these clumps and make sure your dog never feels the nice breeze.
Additionally, you should make sure to frequently brush your dog’s coat as it helps remove dead fur and clumps. Essentially, it will keep your dog’s coat comfortable and in good shape.
However, don’t shave or clip your dog’s coat without first consulting with a vet. It might turn out the fur fighting against the cruel winter winds is keeping your dog cool during the summer as well.
Never Leave Your Dog in a Parked Car!
For your dog, the car is basically an enclosed oven. It retains much more heat than an open area. Even in the shade, a closed car is still a hot and terrible place for your dog. So, it’s a terrible idea to leave them alone in there for a variety of reasons.
For example, your dog might get overly excited due to its surroundings: other cars, people walking, cat, etc. This will lead to them over exhausting themselves increasing the likelihood they will get dehydrated. They could also start to panic from anxiety created by you leaving, again, making them over exhaust themselves. Basically, this is the exact opposite of successfully keeping your dog cool in the summer.
In the end, if you can’t bring the dog into the store or wherever you’re going, leave them at home with the AC.
After reading all these tips, keeping your dog cool in summer doesn’t seem like a tough challenge does it? Honestly, it just requires you to be an attentive and reliable dog owner.