How to Protect Your Dog from Summer Heat

Summer may be hot for humans, but think about how much hotter it is for our dogs! They have fur all over their bodies, after all. Overheating can happen, so we must be extra vigilant about protecting them. Here are some tips for protecting your dogs from the summer heat.

Provide Shade and Water

If your dog is spending time outside in the heat, ensure there is shade or a tarp nearby. Bring cold water with you everywhere. If possible, add ice cubes to the water to maximize the cooling effect.

Be Aware of Appropriate Exercise Times

Exercise is very important for your dog. But it can be pushed aside when the sun is beating down. Instead, focus on getting them to exercise early in the morning or later at night. And don’t force your pet to go outside midday. Remember, asphalt can burn paws.

Purchase a Cooling Vest or Bandana

Not all dogs like clothes, but if yours does, try a cooling vest or bandana. These mesh-cooling accessories only require adding a little water to initiate the evaporative cooling effect.

Know the Symptoms of Overheating

Overheating symptoms include increased panting, (panting is how they sweat!), difficulty breathing, abnormal heart rate, abnormal respiratory rate, excessive drooling, and collapse. Rare but possible symptoms include seizures, vomiting, and bloody diarrhea. You may also be able to tell if your dog is overheating by their elevated body temperature.

If you suspect your dog is overheating, the first move is to hydrate them and get them to a cooler indoor area. Then, call your veterinarian or local animal emergency room for the next steps.

Additional Advice:

  • Never leave your car alone in a hot car.
  • Do not leave your dog unsupervised around a pool.
  • Trim long hair before but do not shave them.
  • Don’t rely on a fan.
  • Take bath time outside when it’s humid.
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