How to keep your dog cool in the summer

Long hot summer days are finally here which is great news for us humans but not so much for our dogs.

As the temperature climbs over 20⁰C/70⁰F, the risk of heatstroke in dogs increases too.

So, what can you do to keep your dog cool and comfortable in the summer?

Here are our top summer care tips for keeping your dog cool on hot days and reducing the risk of heatstroke so you can enjoy the summer together.

Avoid exercising in the hottest parts of the day

Generally, the hottest part of the day is between 12pm and 3pm. So, if you usually go for a lunch time walk with your dog, we recommend going for a walk in the early morning or late evening when it’s still nice and cool.

Hot pavements and roads can also potentially injure your dog’s sensitive paw pads. Put the back of your hand on the surface for 5 seconds and if it hurts your hand, it’ll likely hurt your dog’s paws too.

Get creative with new games and training

If it’s too hot for a walk but your dog has energy to burn, try inventing new games to play together that don’t involve too much running around or work on learning new tricks instead to mentally tire them out.

Keep them hydrated

Just like us, our dogs can dehydrate quickly on hot summer days so make sure there is plenty of cool water available for them to drink.
When you go out on a walk, take a bottle of water and bowl with you so your dog can have a refreshing drink when needed.

Have fun with water

Swimming in lakes, rivers or the sea is a great way to keep your dog cool when it’s warm out. Just make sure the water is clean and not fast flowing and keep an eye on your dog to make sure they don’t swim out too far or get into trouble.

If your dog is not a swimmer, a sprinkler to run through or a paddling pool filled with toys to splash around in can provide hours of entertainment for your dog whilst keeping them nice and cool at the same time.

Never leave your dog alone in the car

Leaving a dog alone in a hot car can be fatal, even if it is parked in the shade or the windows are open.

Cars can heat up very quickly on warm days and even a few minutes can make your dog seriously unwell. Our Pawfit tracker has a built in heat sensor that can alert you if your dog’s environment becomes too hot so you can act quickly to get them to safety.

If you see a dog alone in a car, dial 999 for assistance.

Keep on top of their grooming

If your dog has long fur, you might want to give them a shorter hair cut for the summer months to keep them cool.
It’s also very important to brush their fur regularly to prevent matting, which can trap heat against their body and cause them to overheat.

Signs of heatstroke in dogs

Heatstroke occurs when a dog can’t lower their body temperature and if not treated asap, it can be fatal. Signs of heatstroke include:
• Heavy panting
• Glazed eyes
• A rapid pulse
• Excessive salivation
• Lack of coordination
• Vomiting or diarrhoea
• Loss of consciousness

If you suspect your dog is suffering from heat stroke, call your vet immediately for advice. Move your dog to a cool shaded area, apply wet towels to their head neck and body and let them drink small amounts of water or lick an ice cube.

If you also own a cat, make sure you also read our advice on how to keep your cat cool in the summer.

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