Summer Pet Wellness Tips
You know how to take extra care of yourself during fun summer activities, but playing with your pet during the Dog Days requires extra care on your part, too. (How would you like wearing a fur coat in the summer?) There’s no reason to curtail exercising with your pet, but practicing a few extra wellness steps can make summer safer and more fun for both of you.
Avoid the midday sun
Schedule your outdoor exercise with your pet for the coolest part of the day – typically in the early morning or late evening to avoid overheating and even sunburn. Like you, your pet – especially pets with light skin and hair – needs sunscreen. Rub a bit of sunblock on unprotected areas like the tips of ears, skin around the lips and tip of the nose – on both of you!
Take care on humid days
Thank heavens for sweating in humans; it’s how we rid ourselves of excess body heat. Pets don’t have that luxury, which is why they pant. Panting picks up excess heat and moves it through the nasal passages, but when your pet is in a high-humidity area or in close quarters, panting doesn’t work as well. Move into an air-conditioned area.
Drink plenty of water
Both you and your pet will need plenty of water on hot days. Bring a water bottle for yourself and a collapsible water dish for your best buddy – so you can pull it out and refill wherever you are.
Choose tarp over doghouse
Just like a car – which can reach temperatures far above the heat outside – a confined doghouse can become a dangerous sweatbox for a pet. Encourage your pet to take his shade where you do – under a tree, tarp or overhead that allows plenty of air to circulate.
Little extras count
Little treats count for a lot on hot summer days; many pets love to play with a few ice cubes in their water dish, and even this little touch will help cool them down.
Never leave your pet in the car. Even though it may seem cool outside, the sun can raise the temperature inside your car to 120 degrees Fahrenheit in minutes, even with the windows rolled down. Don’t take the chance.