When a heat wave hits, keeping your dog cool is essential if you want a happy and healthy pup. With the help of Jessicah Heidi we've put together our top 7 summer tips for keeping dogs cool (which you might also want to borrow for yourself).
Why is it important to keep your dog cool?
Chances are if you're hot, your pup is likely to be a fair bit warmer as they can't take their furry jackets off. Just like humans there are a number of health complications that can arise from overheating, like heat stroke, which in extreme situations can very sadly result in mortality. Very early signs of dehydration and overheating can include loss of appetite, lethargy, vomiting or a dry nose - so make sure to keep a beedy eye on your pup to catch them before the condition become more serious.
7 tips on how to keeping dogs cool
Plenty of fresh drinking water
Drinking plenty of water is essential to prevent dehydration and heat stroke, so make sure your pup always has a full bowl of fresh drinking water available. You could even pop a few ice cubes in it from time to time to keep it nice and chilled. Even if the water is readily available though, it doesn't necessarily mean your pup will drink it - they can be silly sometimes! So if you notice your pup isn't much of a drinker, you could try adding some good quality wet dog food into their diet for a tasty alternative. We tend to mix some into Smudge's dry food during the summer months, which always goes down a treat!
Make ice cube treats
If you're active in the dog world of Instagram, you'll notice a trend for immaculately designed 'ice cube treats' has been growing. Trend aside, by freezing anything from plain old water to chunks of vegetables in oat milk, you'll provide your pup with a moisture packed treat that will help keep your dog cool and that they also seem to have a whale of a time slowly devouring.
Freeze a damp towel
Simply dampen a towel, then place in the freezer for at least an hour and you'll have created your very own cooling mat. The cooling effect will wear off quite quickly though, so you might want to invest in a purpose built cooling mat for your pup if you think it's useful.
Make a DIY paddling pool
Depending on the size of your pup and whether they like bath time or not this may vary in easiness. If you've got a smallish breed that does like water though, just find your largest apparatus (we'd recommend a wheel barrow or cleaned out garden waste bin), fill it up with cool water and place in the shade - practically the Maldives!
Do a pavement temperature test
We'd recommend trying to stay indoors during the hottest parts of the day, but if venturing outside is unavoidable always make sure to do a pavement test first. Pavements get very hot and a burnt tootsy pads is extremely painful for your pup.
Go for walkies earlier or later
As much as they might whimper and beg for 'walkies time', you'll know best if it's a suitable temperature for them. Avoid midday walks which tends to be when it's hottest by getting up a little earlier or going out once it's dark.
Let the panting happen
Dogs don't sweat like we do, so they pant to cool down. The speedy and deep breathing quickly exchanges hot air from their lungs with the cooler external air , which enables water on their tongues to evaporate and help regulate body temperature. So let them pant away!
And please do not leave dogs in hot cars!
This might not be in the design, but it's too important to miss out. Under no circumstance ever should you leave your doggy behind in your car, even if it's because your just 'popping out' to do something. Cars are like mini ovens and many dogs die each year from being left in them - so pretty please, just don't do it!