How to keep your dog safe in warmer weather
Wondering how to keep your furry friend cool in warmer weather? Here are some things to keep in mind, as well as some videos from UK rescue org Battersea:
- Walk your dog only very early or very late in the day at its coolest points – do not over-exercise them and never leave them in the car on hot days as both can lead to heatstroke.
- Know the signs of heatstroke – which may include excessive panting or drooling, very red or blue gums, vomiting or diarrhoea, excessive thirst or weakness. Take them to your vet immediately if you suspect your dog is suffering from heatstroke. (If you see a dog left in a car on a hot day, call 999.)
- Do the ‘five-second test’ with pavements, tarmac, sand or any other surface your dog would walk on – if it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for their paws.
- Consider indoor brain games and work-to-eat treats (e.g. frozen kongs or puzzle games) instead of walks to keep them stimulated.
- Ensure access to lots of water in the house and have it with you on walks.
- Create cool spots for them to take refuge – ensure they have shade when outdoors, and create cool spaces indoors with fans and darkened rooms/closed curtains or shades.
- If your dog is a sunbather, set a timer and then bring them indoors to make sure they don’t overdo it and risk heatstroke.
- Consider purchasing cooling accessories such as non-toxic cooling mats, vests or bandanas.
- Try a paddling pool, sprinklers or splash pad (ideally positioned in the shade!) if your dog enjoys playing in or with water.
- Serve frozen treats – simple ideas include frozen bone broth cubes or greek yogurt blended with dog-friendly fruit like strawberries. See a recipe in one of the videos from Battersea below.
Watch Battersea’s video on how to care for dogs during the summer:
Want to make frozen treats for your dog? Here’s an easy recipe from Battersea:
Here are some handy info-graphics with important reminders: