Health Tips for Your Dog This Summer by SynergyVets
Summer is finally approaching and most of us will be excited to see some sunshine. While our dogs will also love to be outside this season, there are a number of steps that owners should take to make sure no harm comes to their beloved pets in the hot weather. Below, we’ve outlined some important tips that you should follow to keep your dog healthy this summer.
Never leave your dog in a hot car
The heat inside a stationary vehicle can become very intense very quickly. Dogs regulate their body heat by panting but this means that they can quickly become dehydrated. Even if you only leave your dog in a hot car for a few minutes, it can have a severe effect on their health. “Cracking a window” is not a good solution either, because the car will continue to absorb heat on very hot days and it will make little difference to the inside temperature.
Protect your dogs from sunburn
You might think that it sounds silly, but dogs can get sunburnt just like humans! It’s particularly common in exposed areas which don’t have much fur such as the nose, ears and belly. Although some breeds are more prone, this is a risk that can affect all dogs. The best solution is to ensure your dog always has access to shade when they are outside and allow them to stay in a shaded area for as long as they need.
Watch out for fleas, ticks and mosquitoes
The activity of fleas, ticks and mosquitoes is highest during the summer months so it’s important to ensure that your dog is fully protected. Make sure you give your pet the appropriate treatments and repellents all year round to prevent an infestation. Mosquitoes are most effective at dawn and dusk so it might be an idea to keep your dog inside, and away from still bodies of water, during these hours.
Keep the paws cool
Pavements can become extremely hot during summer and, if dogs are exposed to uncomfortably hot surfaces, their paws can become sore, burnt and blistered. A good idea is to stick to grassy areas like parks as these won’t cause harm to the paws. If there’s a really hot spell of weather, you could even try dog shoes or pads to protect their paws from getting burnt. Make sure you check your dog’s paws regularly.
Give them plenty of fresh drinking water and shade
We’ve mentioned shade already but it’s absolutely vital to make sure your dog has access to shaded areas when the sun is at its strongest. You should also carry fresh water with you when you go for walks so that your dog can have a drink when they get thirsty. Many parks and shops will have dog bowls outside where you can give your dog a drink.
Give your dog a paddling pool
A great way to keep your dog cool in the summer is by giving them access to cold water. Why not try a paddling pool? Being in the water will help to regulate their body heat and stop them from suffering in the hot weather. Plus, they’ll have lots of fun splashing about!
Go for walks during the cooler hours of the day
A great way to avoid burning hot sunshine and scorching pavements is to go for walks during the early mornings or evenings. Dogs can become hot and tired very quickly during the summer and sticking to these times of day will help ensure they can keep exercising in a healthy and safe way.
Remember, if you’re feeling the heat this summer then your dog is too! Keep your pets safe and happy in hot weather with these easy but important tips.
About the Author: SynergyVets is a dedicated veterinary recruitment agency, with almost 30 years of experience supporting the profession with locum and permanent personnel. They have a great blog which, alongside advice for veterinary candidates, includes useful animal care tips for pet owners.