If you've been outside in just about any region of the U.S., you'll notice one trend: It's hot. The dog days of summer are officially here– which means that it isn't just you that's been feeling a bit overheated.
My pup has not been a fan of the sizzling temperatures lately, but there are a few things I've been trying to do to help her feel more comfortable and cool. Just like we take steps to keep cool in the summer, dogs need a little TLC in the heat and humidity too.
Here are a couple of tips to help your best four-legged friend stay safe and cool this summer:
It's probably best to leave your dog at home when you're running errands, as a hot car can be a dangerous place in the summer. The Humane Society says that the temperatures can rise rapidly inside a car on hot summer days.
For instance, if it's 85 degrees Fahrenheit outside and you leave the car parked for just 30 minutes, the interior of your car can reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit, creating a dangerous environment for your canine companion.
We all get a little more thirsty in the summertime, and your dog is no exception.
If you're planning on being out during the day with your pup, be sure to bring along a portable water container for him or her.
Dogs love to be misted in the summertime, especially on body parts responsible for cooling them down, like the paws and stomach.
You can also lay a cool wet towel down for them to relax and cool off on. When all else fails, your sprinklers outside can also do the trick.
Cesar Milan, aka the Dog Whisperer, also advised dog owners to look for signs of dehydration. We sweat when we get too hot, but dogs cool off through panting. Although a little panting is OK, if it gets excessive or he or she starts drooling excessively, you'll need to give your dog some water and get him or her in the shade immediately. Another sign of dehydration is bloodshot eyes.
Dogs will instinctively know when they are too hot and need to go inside. If you see your pup panting and lingering by the door, be sure to either let him or her in or provide some shade so he or she can cool off.
You love going for a dip in the summer– and your dog does too. In Chicago where I live, we have a dog beach that is completely packed with pups in the summertime, and it's easy to understand why. In the heat and humidity, sometimes the best cure for cooling down is to go for a swim. Cesar Milan says swimming with dogs can be a great bonding experience between dogs and their owners, much like your walks together.
If you don't have a dog-friendly beach nearby, consider investing in a kid pool and letting him or her cool down in it on those extra-hot days.
Exercise is important for your dog year-round. However, in the summer, it might be best to save the walks for early in the mornings or at dusk when the temperatures are a little less harsh. We're sure your pup will be thankful you did.
During the summer, it's important to keep everyone in the apartment cool— including your furry family members! Follow these tips to make sure man's best friend stays safe this summer!