Keeping Your Pet Cool for the Summer

Keeping Your Pet Cool for the Summer

Homemade Pet Treats Reading Keeping Your Pet Cool for the Summer 4 minutes Next Different Pets for Different Lifestyles

That time of year is upon us! It feels like the temperature just keeps going up. As the heat is on, are you keeping your furry family members in mind? Let’s talk about keeping your pet cool and comfortable in the summertime. 

Let’s start with some important pet-parenting healthcare…

Knowing the signs of dehydration and heat exhaustion

Much like humans, our floofs can suffer from overheating. It is important to know the signs. Any of the typical illness symptoms like excess panting, difficulty breathing, lethargy, or an upset stomach can be the result of too much heat. 

If you believe your doggo has overheated, see to it that they are moved to a cool shady area. Encourage your pup to drink some water in little amounts. According to Heatstroke in Dogs, pouring cool (about tap temperature, avoiding very cold) water on your pet can be the best action to cool down an overheated dog. This can continue to be done slowly until their breathing normalizes. 

Now that we’ve addressed the warning signs of your pet’s exposure to too much heat, let’s talk about how to keep them nice and cool. 

Have a Summertime Plan

When you know that you are facing a hot day, help your pet by planning accordingly. If you are able to, walk your dog in the mornings and/or evenings to avoid peak temperatures. Take note of the optimal time of day based on your climate and lifestyle.

When you do take your pet outside, be aware of the surfaces they are on. Streets are usually most heat-dense due to their darker top. Try to avoid walking on blacktop surfaces – sidewalks are likely preferable, but if you have an accessible and well maintained natural trail, all the better. 

If you are leaving your furry friend alone during the day, make sure their space is cool and out of the sun, especially if you don’t have AC. Odds are if you feel discomforted by the heat, so does your pet. Be aware of limiting time exposed to 80-90 degrees, and try as best as you can to avoid temperatures above 90 degrees. 

Dressed for the Occasion: Protective Petwear

Just like us humans, our four-legged friends can benefit from sun protection. Did you know dogs can get sunburnt and can be at risk for skin cancer? This is especially true for breeds with less hair. Our dogs can benefit from some sunscreen, just like us, during sunny outings. 

According to Do Dogs Need Sunscreen from the American Kennel Club, make sure the sunscreen you use on your pup does not contain zinc oxide or para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) These ingredients are unsafe for doggie consumption. 

To avoid any unwanted reaction, make sure to do a skin test, much like you might do for yourself when trying a new skin product. Test a small spot on your dog to ensure that the sunscreen doesn’t cause an allergic reaction. 

Focus sunscreen application on the sun-exposed parts like their nose, ears tips, lips, and anywhere with light pigmentation. Check out the aforementioned article for more information on sunscreening your pup. 

If your pet is going to spend prolonged time in the sun, check out some protective clothing! Hats, jackets, and rashguards out of breathable and comfortable material can help protect your pet’s skin and body temperature. 

Fun in the Sun

You and your pet should soak up the sunshine while you can! Consider planning your summer days with your furry friend in mind. If your dog is a water fan, consider playing with them in the yard with your hose on a hot summer day. If you have access to a lake or beach, maybe try taking your fluffy friend and a life vest for them for a fun outing. 

Summertime comes with certain considerations for staying safe from sun and heat. This much is true not only for us humans, but also our furry friends. As those temperatures rise, keep your pooch in mind! With these tips, you and your dog can enjoy these warm months safely and comfortably. 

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