Your dog is part of your family, and like you, dogs can have trouble surviving in the hot summer sun. As you take precautions for yourself during the summer, don’t forget to make sure that your dog is being accurately protected too.
You may not layer your dog in sunscreen, and you may not cover their face with a hat, but there are plenty of things that you can do to ensure that your furry friends is also being monitored in the heat.
1. Give them shade.
Like you, a dog should never be exposed to the sun and only the sun for extended periods of time. If your dog enjoys being in the yard, make sure there is a place that can provide the dog with shade, such as a dog house or covered patio. Though they may still be outside, the shade keeps them directly out of the sun, which is much safer on their overall health.
2. Give them plenty of water.
Dogs can easily dehydrate too, especially with the thick coats they have. Make sure that all water bowls are constantly filled during the summer. If your dog is going to be outside for a while, it’s a good idea to place a bowl of water outside too. This way, your dog doesn’t have to wait until he gets in the house before he can have something to drink.
3. Use sunscreen.
No, we are not joking. Though you don’t have to lather them in sunscreen like you do for yourself, you should place it on your dog’s nose, ear tips and any part of their body that contains exposed skin. Make sure to use a strong SPF and apply it at least 15 minutes before your dog goes outside. This will help keep your dog from becoming sunburned.
4. Give them a trim.
If your dog has a lot of hair, you should have them groomed. Getting rid of some of that extra fur can help keep your dog stay cool during the summer months. Just make sure that you don’t take too much off, which could expose their skin and put them at greater risk of getting sunburned. If you have a long-haired dog, you should have them groomed every four to six weeks.
5. Give them a bath.
Bathe your dog in lukewarm water to help them cool off from the hot sun. If you can give them a bath weekly, that is the most beneficial, but if you can’t, bathing them at least once per month is good.
If your dog likes going in the pool, you need to give them a bath after swimming, otherwise the chemicals in the water will dry out their coat and skin.
6. Avoid hot surfaces.
A dog’s paws are not resistant to the elements. If you bring them onto an asphalt pavement that has been in direct sunlight for hours, it will burn their paws. If their paws become cracked or burnt, you will need to invest in soothing ointments to help relieve the pain.
7. Leash your dog.
If you take daily walks with your furry friend without a leash, you may want to start leashing them during the summer. Too many things can spark your dog to take off, such as numerous children at the park or the nice loud crack of a firework. To avoid losing them, make sure that they’re leashed.
8. Let them in the house.
If it’s extremely hot outside and you have the A/C running, let your dogs in the house for a while. Chances are they’ll be so hot that they’ll find a place to lay comfortably and pass out. Like you, your dog can also benefit from the luxury of the air conditioning.
Make sure that your dog is constantly being looked after during the summer. Always check to make sure that they’re given shade as well as plenty of water. Following all of these tips will help keep your dog safe.