Updated: Jul 24, 2019
This week looks to be a hot one with temperatures up to 28 degrees on Saturday! Perfect BBQ weather but not so great for our fluffy family members. For my adventure dog walking group I make sure we go to all the shady tall tree walks. I take portable water bowls, lots of water and wet towels for after plus the van has excellent air con throughout. We do less physical walking and more calm scent work, which helps to keep our adventure walk dogs safe from heat stroke.
Here is a few ideas on how can you help your dog when taking out for their walks in the heat wave.
Change your walking schedule to early mornings and late evenings.
Go to shady places and ones that have lakes or streams. Take water out with you if there is no natural water supply.
Invest in a special dog cooling coat. They are great for dogs with thick coats or dogs that don’t cope well in the heat. They can wear the coat while out on their walks.
If you have a white coated dog or a thin coated breed put some doggy suncream on them to prevent them from getting sun burnt.
Darker coated breeds tend to absorb heat quickly and are at more risk from heat stroke.
Short nosed breeds such as pugs, frenchies or Boxers have a hard time keeping their temperature down and breathing sufficiently so are likely to suffer quickly even by just being out in the garden.
Check the temperature of the pavement before doing a lead walk. If your hand starts to heat up after 10 seconds then it’s too hot for your dog to walk on, as the pads of their paws will burn.
Shorten your walks. Instead of taking your dog out for their usual 30 minute stroll reduce to 20 minutes or even 15 minutes if its reaching temperatures of 26 degrees or more.
If it’s too hot then consider not taking your dog out for a walk at all. Instead keep your dog cool inside and work on some fun mental stimulation games instead. Here is my blog on: mental stimulation activities
Signs your dog is suffering and at risk of heat stoke:
Excessive and ongoing panting
Lethargic, callapsed, seizures
How to keep your dog cool at home:
Invest in a special cooling mat for your dog to lay on. Or an alternative to this is to soak towels in water for your dog to lay on or drape over them. The evaporation acts to cool the dog.
Ice cubes, doggy ice cream, frozen stuffed up kong or frozen puzzle toys are all great ways to help keep your dog cool while also keeping them mentally stimulated.
Set up a shady area in the garden if you don't already have any natural shade. Then your dog can still enjoy being out side and relaxing in the fresh air.
Keep your dog's coat brushed and not clogged with hair. A dogs coat is their air con as well, so shaving it can actually make them feel the heat more if they are naturally fluffy.
Buy a cheap kiddie paddling pool. Some dogs love just lazing around in the water to keep cool while others might find great delight in splashing about finding their toys or frozen peas in the water!
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