Summer is almost here, and the weather is heating up. Pets living or spending time outside in the heat can suffer serious health issues such as heat stroke and burns to the paw pads from hot pavement. If you pet will be spending any time having fun in the sun, follow these five steps to keep them cool!
1. Throw Them Some Shade
Pets and people alike need sun protection in the hot summer months. Providing adequate shade for your pet can cool their environmental temperature by ten degrees or more. Shade also provides protection from damaging UV rays that can cause skin cancer and damage your pet’s eyes. Be sure that the shade is provided by a solid surface instead of a thin or semi-transparent material such as a tarp or screen.
2. Water, Water, Water
One of the key parts of preventing heat stroke and heat related illness is keeping your pet properly hydrated. Hot weather causes water loss through sweating and panting. Providing fresh, clean water is very important to keeping your pet cool in the hot weather. Be aware that your pet will need a larger amount of water when it’s hot out compared to cooler temperatures, so be sure to check the water dish regularly and refill it properly.
3. Give ‘em a Hair Cut
Long haired pets can suffer serious heat stroke because their fluffy, long coats insulate their body heat. If your pet has a long or thick fur coat, consider having a full body shave done with a groomer. This will help keep your pet cool by allowing them to cool their core body temperature faster and with less effort.
4. Take a Swim
Providing your pet with safe access to water to swim or lay in can help alleviate the heat. Kiddie pools are a great way to provide this opportunity to cool down in the hot weather. Always supervise your pet while swimming, and make sure that the depth is appropriate for your pet to touch the bottom of the pool.
5. Be a Fan
A cool breeze can drop the feel of the outside temperature significantly. If your pet spends time outside in the heat, be sure to provide a fan for air circulation. The moving air helps evaporate moisture from your pet during panting to help cool them down. Portable fans are a cheap and easy way to provide comfort and keep your pet from overheating this summer