Posted on: 20 June 2017
Like humans, dogs are equipped to deal with high temperatures for short periods of time. They can slowly adapt to spending more time in the heat, but the heat is always going to present a few risks, from dehydration to a chance of heat exhaustion. So, when the temperature rises, take these precautions to keep your canine companion in top health.
Offer cool water frequently.
If you take your dog out for a walk in the heat, always offer him some cool water as soon as you come home. If you're walking for more than 20 minutes or so, take a bottle of water and a plastic bowl with you so that you can offer him something to drink along the way. Opt for cool water rather than ice cold water, as ice cold water can be a shock to the system and some dogs don't like it.
If he wants to stop playing or walking, let him.
When you're walking your dog or playing with him in the heat and he starts to display behaviors that suggest he is tired, end your session. Don't force or encourage him to keep going, or he may end up with heat exhaustion. If he is panting and seems tired, get him to a cool place as soon as possible, and offer him some cool water. If he is not excited about drinking, offering him some chicken or beef broth may tempt him to drink.
Protect his paws.
Hot pavement can burn the pads of a dog's feet quite easily. It's best to walk your dog or play with him on the grass during the summer so he does not end up with burns. If you must walk him on the pavement, purchase some paw protectors from a local pet store and put them on his feet. These are like little insulated boots that keep his paws from getting too hot.
Let him get wet.
Do you pass a pond or stream on your walks? If so, let your dog wade in the water and cool down if he tries to do so. His coat will stay wet for a while afterwards, keeping him cool throughout the rest of the walk. You can also let him walk through neighbors' sprinklers if he likes to do this and the neighbors don't mind.
If you practice the tips above, you can walk your dog on hot summer days without putting his well-being at risk. For more questions about protecting your animal, contact a veterinarian in your area.Share