DOG vs HEAT; how to take care of a pet on hot days?
Like any self-respecting pooch, I love walks! However, lately they have been unbearable. Due to the heat, I am not able to make my favorite route without stopping in the shady grass and taking a water drink. However, along with my oldies, we know a couple of ways to help dogs cope with the high temperatures in summer.
Why is heat dangerous for dogs?
In dogs, sweat glands important in thermoregulation are located only on the pads of the paws. For this reason, the only way to cool the dog's body is to gasp with the tongue hanging out, but it can also be unreliable; P The most vulnerable to high temperatures are dogs of brachycephalic breeds, i.e. French bulldogs, pugs, Pekingese; puppies, chronically ill, elderly and obese dogs. It is also risky to walk in the heat with dogs without hair, e.g. a Peruvian or Mexican naked dog, Chinese Crested Dog, American Hairless Terrier, because such a walk may end up with sunburn. Dogs of these breeds can be easily covered with cream with a UV filter.
Walk with the dog in the heat
Walking the dog is a must. Despite the high temperatures outside, our pet still has to take care of its physiological needs. If possible, I recommend going on trips (especially longer ones), preferably early in the morning and in the evening, when the temperatures are slightly lower. It is better to avoid sunbathing in full sun, especially on hot asphalt - it can irritate the paw pads. It's a good idea to target shaded areas, lawns, and preferably the vicinity of reservoirs or water sources where your little one could cool down. You must take a bottle of water with you (preferably slightly chilled) and possibly a bowl / drinker.
Pressure-free dog harness with summer graphics:
How to help your Dog endure the heat?
If you are the lucky owner of a garden or a balcony, you can give your pooch a gift in the form of a paddling pool where he can cool down if he needs to. Sprinklers of all kinds will also be pleasing. It is worth paying attention to the location of the lair in the apartment - it is important that it is not in full sun. You can also plant your pet near a fan or air conditioning. Cooling mats and vests may also be useful gadgets, and if you do not want to make such investments, just a wet towel is enough. Dogs also love to lie on tiles in the summer, so let's not chase them mercilessly when they lie in the middle of the bathroom or kitchen.
What not to expose your dog to in the summer?
- we do not leave the dog alone in a hot car - for many it is obvious, but for some delinquents not necessarily
- we do not leave the dog alone in direct sunlight, e.g. under a shop or closed on a heated balcony
- we do not put on a muzzle - it prevents the dog from cooling down. If necessary, let's get a physiological muzzle that allows you to breathe freely
- we do not exaggerate with physical activity and obedience training - they additionally increase the pet's body temperature
- we do not serve ice water to the dog
- we do not set the fans and air conditioning to the maximum - a dog, just like a human, can catch a cold or be exposed to upper respiratory tract infections
- we avoid metal spikes - they heat up easily and can irritate the dog's skin
For the summer season, you should also consider visiting the dog's hairdresser, if of course there is such a need. The coat is insulating - it protects against heat loss in winter and against overheating in summer. Therefore, too short a haircut is not advisable. Long-haired dogs can be trimmed slightly, while short-haired dogs can be groomed properly. And everything is sitting, bam!
A dog in summer must look good!
At high temperatures, dogs are at the same risk of suffering from heatstroke as humans. The symptoms of such a stroke are not very specific, but it is characteristic that they all occur at the same time. They are:
- intense gasping
- a bluish tongue and gums
- problems with maintaining balance
- loss of consciousness
- increased body temperature
What to do when we suspect a stroke in our pet?
You should quickly, but not suddenly, lower his body temperature by cold compresses and placing in a shaded place. We recommend cleaning the mouth of excess saliva and giving water (there can also be electrolytes, if you have any). It's usually best to go to the vet as well after such an incident.
Greetings to you and your pets, nice and warm, do not get into the heat!