13 Ways to Keep Your Dog Cool in the Summer Heat
It’s that time of year again — the dog days of summer! This can be a difficult time for dogs, as they don’t have enough sweat glands to cool themselves down. That’s why it’s important for pet owners to take some extra steps to keep their furry friends comfortable during the hot summer months. Our team at Dr. Shiba has put together a list of 13 ways you can help your pooch beat the heat. Keep reading for tips on how to make sure your pup stays fresh all summer long!
Give your dog a cooling bath.
A cool (not cold) bath can help lower your dog’s body temperature and is a great way to keep them fresh during the summer months. If you have a garden, you can even fill a big bucket of cool water and leave it there for your dogs to use whenever they want.
Put ice in their water bowl.
Adding some ice cubes to your dog’s water bowl will help keep the water cooler for longer. This is especially helpful on hot days when your pup might be drinking more than usual.
Invest in a cooling mat.
Cooling mats are specifically designed to help regulate your dog’s body temperature. They work by absorbing body heat and providing a cool surface for your pup to lie on.
Avoid the midday sun.
The hottest hours of the day are usually between 11am and 3pm. If possible, try to avoid taking your dog out during these times. If you must go for a walk, make sure to stick to shady areas and bring along some water for your pup to drink.
Bring water with you on walks.
Dogs can get dehydrated quickly, so it’s important to bring water with you on walks, especially during the summer months. A good rule of thumb is to bring one cup of water for every 20 minutes of walking.
Don't forget to protect your dog's paws from hot surfaces.
It’s important to remember that dogs can be burned by hot surfaces, too! While their paws are much thicker and more resilient than ours, they still need protection from the heat. The most obvious way is to avoid walking on hot pavement or sand, but you should also be careful about taking walks in the desert or rockier areas where there may be exposed rocks that are very hot.
Consider getting your dog some boots or shoes just like the ones from Qumy Pet. Their dog boots are not just for hot days, but cold days too!
Consider a cooling pad or vest.
Cooling pads are great for keeping your dog cool. They can help dogs get through the heat and keep them healthy, which means they’re a good thing to have in your pet first aid kit. For smaller breeds like terriers, a cooling pad that fits in their kennel is best. Larger dogs like German shepherds or Labrador retrievers should have access to larger cooling pads that can be placed on the ground outside their pen or run.
Never leave them in the car.
It’s never a good idea to leave your dog in the car, even for a short period of time. Cars can heat up quickly, and your dog could be at risk for heatstroke or even death.
Monitor their activity.
In hot weather, it's important to keep an eye on your dog's activity level and make sure they're not overdoing it. Dogs can easily become overexcited in warm weather and may not realize they need to take a break until it's too late. If you notice your pup is panting excessively or seems tired, find a cool spot for them to rest in the shade.
Give them frozen treats.
Frozen treats are a great way to help your dog cool down and stay hydrated during the summer months. You can make your own by freezing water or fruit juice in an ice cube tray, or you can purchase frozen dog treats from the store. Either way, your pup is sure to love them!
Create a makeshift air conditioner.
If it's really hot outside and you don't have access to air conditioning, there are still ways you can keep your dog cool. One option is to put a bowl of ice in front of a fan. The fan will blow the cold air toward your dog, creating a makeshift air conditioner. Just be sure not to point the fan directly at them, as this could cause dehydration.
Take them for a swim.
If you have access to a pool or lake, take advantage of it! Most dogs love swimming and it's a great way for them to stay cool in the summer heat. Just be sure to supervise your pup at all times, as they could get tired and drown if left unattended.
You could also consider getting your fur baby neck floaties to help your dog stay afloat and swim safely. Check out Purrfect Life’s neck floaties on Amazon. Their floaties include an adjustable velcro strap to ensure the best fit and a removable button cover that is soft and comfortable for your dog.
Watch for any signs of heatstroke.
Heatstroke is a potentially fatal condition that occurs when your dog's temperature rises to 105 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. It can happen even on a cool day; dogs' bodies can't regulate their temperatures as well as humans, so they're far more susceptible to overheating.
Symptoms of heatstroke:
- Heavy panting
- Elevated heart rate
- Extreme lethargy and weakness
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Glazed eyes and red gums
- Excessive salivation/drooling and difficulty breathing.
If you suspect your dog has heatstroke—or if you have any concerns about his health at all—take him immediately to the vet!
By following these simple tips, you can help keep your pup cool and comfortable all summer long.
If you need to give your furry friend an extra boost this summer, our functional dog snacks are designed to support your pup's health and well-being during the summer heat by providing them with the nutrients they need in order to stay hydrated and energized throughout the day. Get three times the good vibes these all-natural functional snacks: Happy Tummy, Jolly Joints, and Silky Fur treats. Check them here!