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During summer, there are so many fun activities to do with your dog. From hiking to beach visits, the warm weather opens up tons of new opportunities. Why and how to keep your dog cool?
Unfortunately, fun in the sun can pose a danger to your furry friend. High temperatures and direct sunlight can lead to heatstroke, dehydration, and sunburn if you’re not careful.
5 Ways to keep your dog cool this summer
1. Keep Hydrated with Cool, Fresh Water
Your dog’s hydration levels are a top priority when they’re outside in the heat. Whether you’re out at the park, on the lake, or in your own backyard, make sure your dog always has access to clean, cool water.
If your dog is engaging in a lot of physical activity, give them small amounts of water frequently instead of an entire bowl of water all at once. This gives their body time to absorb the water and helps avoid bloat.
Ice cubes are a great way to portion small amounts of water. Give your dog an ice cube every 10-15 minutes.
2. Pick Your Play Times Wisely
On particularly blistering days, try to limit your outside time to the coolest parts of the day. Those times tend to be mornings and evenings when the sun is lower in the sky.
Remember the factor in humidity as well. Even in moderate summer temperatures, high humidity can keep your dog from cooling itself which can lead to dangerously high internal temperatures.
3. Take Frequent Breaks
Dogs and their humans tend to overdo it in the summertime with physical activity. Because there are so many fun things to do, we want to spend hours outside playing with our dogs.
It’s important to take frequent breaks in between exercise and playtime, at least every 15-20 minutes, to give your dog (and you!) a chance to cool down.
Taking a break inside or in a shady spot gives your dog the chance to rehydrate and you a chance to assess your dog for signs of overheating.
4. Use Frozen Treats
Frozen treats are the perfect way to cool down on a hot day, and they can also serve as a fun enrichment puzzle inside if the temperature is too high outside.
Frozen fruits and vegetables are perfect, bite-sized treats that are perfect for training, or you can step it up a notch with a DIY popsicle or frozen Kong. Filling and freezing Kongs or other feeder toys makes your pup work harder and the treatment lasts even longer.
5. Go Swimming
What better way to spend a summer afternoon than swimming with your best furry friend? Whether in the pool, at the lake, or at a doggy beach, swimming helps your dog cool off while getting great exercise.
Even if you don’t have a pool or a local dog-friendly swimming spot, a small kiddie pool in your backyard is still a fun way for your dog to cool off.
If your dog has never gone swimming before, it’s best to start slow and equip your pup with a life jacket, just in case.
Ready for a Fun, Safe Summer with Your Dog?
When the weather warms, there are so many possibilities for fun with your dog, from swimming to nature walks to trips to the dog park.
As long as you keep your pup hydrated, take frequent breaks, and keep them safe, you can make this summer the best one yet.
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