Summer is a great time to be outdoors enjoying the lovely weather. Unfortunately, as temperatures and humidity rise, the great weather can quickly turn into a nightmare. The fact is that if you are feeling the heat, your pet is feeling the same. Your dog can end up suffering as a result of the heat. Here are some tips that will keep your dog from overheating during summer.
Do Not Shave Your Dog
Many dog owners assume that shaving the dog will keep him or her much cooler. Dog fur works effectively to offer insulation and to protect the skin from direct heat. A dog’s fur will keep him or her warm in cold weather and cool in hot weather. When you shave your dog, you take away this protection and the result can be overheating and sunburn. Regularly blowing or brushing the fur will help enhance airflow.
Keeping the Dog Hydrated
It is vital to ensure that your dog is well hydrated throughout the day. Keep his water bowl filled and change the water regularly. Leaving water out for too long during summer can lead to the growth of bacteria. Make sure that you keep your dog from drinking from puddles, as the water may contain toxins. A thirsty dog will be tempted to drink from any source.
Resting in the Shade
If you notice that your dog is panting during your walk, you should allow him or her to cool off. Panting is how dogs try to cool themselves. Dogs sweat through their paws and it can be difficult to know the effect that the heat has on them. Take frequent breaks, allowing the dog to rest in a shaded area. It also helps to have a fan that you can use to cool down the dog.
Take Your Dog Swimming
Just like you love swimming on a hot day, your dog will enjoy being in the water. Your dog can reap the benefits of cooling down while getting exercise. Swimming works effectively to cool down your pet and it also helps to blow out the dead undercoat. A doggy life vest will help ensure that your pooch stays afloat.
Using Pet-Friendly Sunscreen
Just like humans, pets can also get sunburned. This is especially the case for dogs that have light-colored fur. Animal sunburns are just as bad as human sunburns and they can cause redness, peeling, and even skin cancer. Use pet-friendly sunscreen on your dog to protect him or her from the effects of the heat. Pay attention to areas such as the inner ears, the lips, and the tip of the nose.
Knowing Your Dog
It is very important to know when your dog has reached its limit. Avoid over-exercising the dog in the summer months. Knowing his or her limits will keep you from pushing him or her in the hot weather. Plan activities during the cooler hours of the day. Remember, different dog breeds will react differently to high temperatures.
You can make some popsicles that will keep your dog cool. The treats will keep your pet cool and hydrated. You should never leave your dog alone in the car. Be careful where you walk and remember to keep your dog’s paws protected from the hot ground.
To learn more about taking care of your dog, visit Mokena Animal Clinic at our office in Mokena, Illinois. You can also call 708-479-2811 to book an appointment today.