5 Things You Can do to Keep your Dog Cool
on April 28, 2016
Posted in Dogs
With the weather getting warmer, we need to think about preventing heat stroke and heat stress in our pets. Here are 5 tips that you can follow to help keep your dog cool inside and outside the home.
Provide multiple sources of water for your pet. This is important because only one water bowl can be knocked over or it could run out of water. You can also provide outdoor fountains or large jugs with attached bowls.
Play with your dog in the shade and if you have to leave him outside in the yard for any length of time make sure shade is available. Being directly in the sun raises body temperature very quickly. Shade can be a tree, umbrella, or a covered porch. A kiddie pool in the shade can be a great thing for keeping your dog cool!
Schedule walks or exercise early in the morning or late in the evening when the temperature is cooler. Avoid the hottest part of the day, particularly if you have a dog with a short nose like a pug or boxer. These dogs lack the natural cooling system that comes with a long nose and so are more subject to heat stress. Older pets are also a concern in the heat. Excess panting, falling behind on a walk, seeking shade or just lying down are all signs your dog needs to stop exercising and come into an air conditioned space.
If your dog is thick coated or long coated have them groomed to remove mats and undercoat or cut their hair shorter. If you elect to have your dog shaved, remember he can be subject to sunburn so be careful
Check the areas that your pet frequents during the day to make sure they will be cool enough throughout the heat of the day. A garage, enclosed porch or outbuilding might feel cool when you leave for work, but it can turn into a deadly oven later in the day. Check to see how hot they get before you decide it’s safe to leave a pet in them during the day. Make sure your AC is working before you leave the dog alone in a hot house and NEVER EVER leave the dog in the car even if the windows are open.
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Janice Huntingford, DVM, has been in veterinary practice for over 30 years and has founded two veterinary clinics since receiving her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. She has studied extensively in both conventional and holistic modalities. Ask Dr. Jan