Looking after dogs in hot weather

During Summer, there is nothing more enjoyable than taking your dog for a nice long walk, you’ll both feel all the better for it. However as professional dog walkers, we are aware that this freedom increases the dangers your dog can be exposed to. So here are our Essential Tips to help you make sure that you and your dog make the most of the great outdoors.

Heat Stroke

It’s all too easy to forget that dogs are not as good as humans at dealing with hot weather and they can easily overheat, especially if they are enjoying a game chasing after a ball. Some simple precautions can stop this happening.

Exercise them in the mornings and evenings when the weather is cooler.

Take extra care with long-haired, black, short-nosed dogs, overweight and elderly dogs who are especially at risk in hot weather, even on a regular walk.

Make sure you always take water with you, even on a short walk, just in case. On really hot days if they are playing, make sure they have a break every few minutes and give them a cooling spray with a hose when you get back. 

Watch out for hot pavements

Ouch! Take care on pavements – they heat up in the sun and can easily burn those pads. Here’s a good test – put the back of your hand on the pavement, and if you can’t keep it there for five seconds, it’s too hot for your dog to walk on. 

Hot Cars & Spaces

You should not leave your dog in the car for even a minute on a sunny day even with the window slightly open. The same also applies to hot, airless rooms such as a conservatory.  At 25 degrees Celsius, dogs in hot cars begin to pant excessively within 2 minutes and can die in less than 15 minutes.

Take care if going on a long journey on a hot day especially if you carry your dog behind the rear seats – remember they are surrounded by more glass than you are. If you have air conditioning make sure you use it and direct the airflow towards your pet. If you don’t, drive with the window down – the air will help them pant and cool off. Whatever you do, make sure you have plenty of water and take regular breaks.

Preventing Sunburn

When we go out in the sun we plaster ourselves with sun cream, but do we ever do the same for our four legged friends?  All hairless breeds and dogs that have been clipped should be kept out of the sun as much as possible. Breeds such as terriers, spaniels, Chihuahuas, Doberman pinschers and other shorthaired dogs, as well as all breeds with white or pink skin, are at high risk from sunburn.

Dogs are pretty good at finding shade but if you know where you are going doesn’t have much, then take along either a special sunblock from your vet. 

It is also a good idea to keep dogs indoors or well shaded areas between 10am and 4pm when the sun is at its fiercest.

We hope you have found these few simple precautions from We Love Pets helpful in making enjoying the great outdoors in Summer with your pet safer and less of a worry. If you have any concerns please contact your vet for advice. 

This entry was posted on 30th May 2017.