So its got a bit hot, well really hot and as a dog walker I have to be even more careful then normal to make sure all dogs stay fully hydrated and don’t over heat. Dogs can die from heat stroke so it is very important to make sure that they can be exercised and mentally stimulated in a way that keeps them nice and cool! This can be usually done by walking dogs very early in the morning or very late at night when its cooler. However there are also ways to help your dog have fun and keep cool at home!
First off, kongs and other frozen treats, you can read my blog on kongs here. They are good for keeping dogs occupied at home and frozen kongs can take a long time to get through which also helps tire your dogs out.
Another way is paddling pools!
If your dog is a water lover, don’t expect them to automatically enjoy a paddling pool. Some will but some won’t! Ours didn’t like the paddling pool much at all and one of them will only now go in it when he is really hot and feels he needs to cool down but he won’t just play in it for the sake of it.
There are some important points to make about paddling pools though. Do not force your dog into it or put them in it because its more likely to make them scared of it then enjoy it!
So how do you get your dog in the paddling pool? Well you can put in it whatever you want, tennis balls, dog treats, anything the dog might like! Give them time to get used to it without any pressure and eventually you will hopefully have a dog that loves water!
The best bit is, you can get cheap material paddling pools for next to nothing! So whilst getting your dog used to them these are fab! They are easy in and out for the dogs, however if you end up with a dog like Lily who loves to splash and dig at the water, you might need to update to a hard one because she shredded the bottom of the material one.
If your dog really doesn’t like the paddling pools then wet towels, cooling coats and cooling mats are also great for keeping your dog cool. Keeping the curtains closed helps to keep your house cool. Then you can always do small amounts of training such as teaching some tricks to keep their brains occupied. If you need advice on any of the above, please get in touch! I am happy to give advice on how to keep your dogs cool 🙂
Or if you want to be adventurous, check out these guys! Canine SUP are a great company who teach you to do stand up paddle boarding with your dog! They do have regular sessions in Nottingham and well worth checking out!
Some other points to make note of in hot weather:
- If your dog wears a muzzle make sure its an open caged one not a material one so they can pant and drink
- Keep walks to early morning/late evening
- Put ice in the water – some dogs like to play with it and it can cool the water. If you are worried about it please talk to your vet but it is deemed safe.
- Frozen treats!
- Keep dogs cool! If being left, you can freeze plastic bottles of water and put under the dog beds to cool them. If your at home you can use a cooling coat but don’t leave it on if you are going out as they can cause the dog to warm up quickly if they dry out. Wet towels are also great for dogs to lay on and you can also get cooling mats.
- If you have a cool floor in the house, tiles/stone, then see if you can allow the dog access to them so they can keep themselves cool
- Make sure your dogs have plenty of water (ceramic bowls are harder to tip over)
- Most windows can be locked slightly open, can be worth doing this to help keep the house cool, along with keeping the curtains shut
- If you do take your dogs out, try to either keep to areas with the water or take some with you so they can keep hydrated. If your dog likes to swim then let them enjoy! Just be aware of blue green algae as its toxic to dogs!
- Wet the belly, paws and around the neck and ears of a dog to help keep them cool
- Shaving a dog may not help cool them down, it can do the opposite. A lot of dogs coats are well adapted to keeping the dogs cool and shaving them removes this ability.
- If your dog is over weight or have health issues it won’t kill them to not be walked for a few days to keep them cool. If you are at all worried talk to your vet
All in all, enjoy your dog and enjoy the lovely weather safely 🙂