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Tips To Keep Your Dog Cool This Summer!

by Coach Lilly

Summer is a fun time of year for dogs, as much as it is fun for humans and many dogs still want to play outdoors despite the heat. There are many ways to keep your dog cool as we encounter the summer heat.  Keep in mind that dogs cannot cool themselves by sweating like humans, they sweat a small amount through their pads, but dogs primarily cool off by panting.  Even when they are panting, it is not enough when it is extremely hot and humid.

Fresh, cold water is essential!

It is essential that you keep fresh, cool water available to your dog at all times.  In hot weather, this is even more critical so they do not over-heat.  Make sure you keep the water dish full in a covered location and change the water frequently.  If spending a lot of time outdoors, consider installing a water bowl that hooks up to a faucet.  There are many systems available that are designed to provide water and are replenished by the dog’s motion.

Swimming can be a great summer activity!

If you have a swimming pool try getting your dog to enjoy the water.  Swimming is not olny good exercise for dogs, it can cool them off quickly.  Many pools are built now with a “sun shelf” that consists of a 1 foot deep shelf to relax and stay cool.  Our Boston Terrier’s Lilly and Sophia love the “sun shelf”. 

If you don’t have a swimming pool, then a kiddie pool (molded plastic style) could be a great addition to your summer fun.   Many dogs enjoy playing and lounging in the cool water.  It is best to supervise your dog at all times in the pool (as you would a child!).  Make sure to keep the plastic pool in a shady spot and change the water frequently. 

Make sure your dog has shade!

Dogs might enjoy a little sunbathing, but he or she ultimately needs a shady spot.  Sun exposure not only leads to heat exhaustion, it can also cause sunburn.  Dogs can get sunburned like us!  The best thing is to offer them a shaded spot.  If your backyard doesn’t provide a lot of shade, consider getting an insulated dog house and put the dog house in a shady area for extra coolness.  If your dog likes the indoors better, perhaps install a doggie door so they can go outside as needed, but come back to cool off.

DoggieNation’s final thoughts!

Air conditioning and fresh water is the best way to prevent overheating.  No matter what you do to keep your dog cool, it is most important to monitor them.  When in doubt, bring them indoors to cool off!  If you notice any over heating or possible heat stroke, contact your veternarian immediately. 

We hope you have found these tips helpful during the hot summer months! 

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