It’s summertime! If you could, you’d stay to stay indoors to evade the scorching heat, but your dog still needs to be walked even when it’s hot. Here are five tips to keep your dog safe when walking your dog during heatwave/warm weather.
Avoid the hottest times of the day
Walk your dog early in the morning and/or later in the evening when it’s cooler. Not only is walking at noon or in the afternoon uncomfortable, but it also increases your dog’s risk of suffering from heatstroke and burned paw pads. If your pup is used to walking three to four times a day, you can make their morning and evening walks a little longer to ensure they still get adequate exercise.
Prefer Shady Routes
If your dog’s normal walking route doesn’t provide much cover from the sun, consider changing courses. Try to find a walking path that’s lined with trees, or plan a new route that includes more shady spots. This is also a good opportunity make the walk fun, as dogs can get bored walking the same route day in and day out. So not only do you avoid the sun, but your pooch will also get to experience new sights, sounds, and smells.
Before walking your four-legged friend, check the ground with your own hand or bare foot. Surfaces such as asphalt and sand tend to heat up under the sun; if you can’t keep your hand or foot on the ground for more than three seconds, then it’s too hot for your dog’s paws. In that case, postpone the walk to later in the evening when the weather has cooled down.
Tips from Animal Behaviorst Annie Levy
Be aware of the signs of heatstroke
Heatstroke is a life-threatening condition; signs include but are not limited to heavy panting, excessive drooling, vomiting, lethargy, staggering, collapsing, and a bright red tongue. If you suspect your dog is suffering from a heatstroke, transfer them to a cooler environment right away and apply or spray cool water (not ice water) to their ears, abdomen, and paw pads. Then take them to the vet immediately, even if they seem to be getting better.
Walking your four-legged pal in hot weather doesn’t have to be an unpleasant experience. A little extra care and planning goes a long way in helping your pooch enjoy their summer walks!🐕 Take shorter dog walks for flat-faced dogs
Brachycephalic breeds such as Pugs, Boxers, Bulldogs, and Boston Terriers have a more difficult time breathing and staying cool in hot weather, putting them at a higher risk of overheating. Dogs who are older, overweight, or have a thick coat are also more vulnerable. If your pooch falls under any of these categories, keep their walks short and add indoor activities to their daily routine to prevent boredom.