Tips for keeping your dog cool in the summer heat

Photo by Robson Hatsukami Morgan on Unsplash

With Victoria’s first heat wave upon us and temperatures heating up around the country, it is important to keep your dogs in mind when it comes to keeping cool. Here are a few tips for beating the summer heat!

Exercise your dog early in the morning or late at night

Since these are the cooler parts of the day, this will make the walk more comfortable for both you and your dog. Lots of exercise is healthy for dogs, but this is the time of year to back off on exercise intensity.

Check the pavement.

Before you head out for a walk, touch the pavement. If it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog’s paw pads. Walk on the grass and stay off the asphalt. You also might want to try booties for your dog, so their paws don’t burn.

Keep your dog hydrated!

Different dogs have different needs when battling the heat. Keep in mind that darker coats absorb more heat than lighter coats. Also, overweight dogs are at higher risk for dehydration. Carry a bottle of water when going on a walk with your dog. Better yet have your dog carry it for you in a backpack or a vest! The water in the bottles will keep the dog cooler and give the dog a sense of purpose.

Find innovative ways to cool your dog.

Don’t have air conditioning? No problem! Find a spot in the shade and set up a kiddie pool. Lay down a wet towel for your dog to lie on. Or simply set up a fan in front of a pan of ice.

Dogs cool from the bottom up.

Make sure to spray the paws and stomach, not just the top of the dog, when spraying it with water. A wet towel does more good on the bottom of your dog than when laid on the top of its coat.

Consider a good clip

Many dogs have their coats regularly clipped and it makes a huge difference to their core body temperature. Chat to a groomer about whether your dog could benefit from a clip.

Never leave your dog in the car.

No, not even if you think you’ll only be a few minutes. Even when it isn’t that hot outside, the temperature can soar inside a closed car. On a 29 degree day, it can reach 38 degrees within 10 minutes and that’s with a window cracked. After 30 minutes, it could be up to 48 degrees. Leave your dog at home or go places where they can come with you.

Use hot weather as an excuse to swim more often!

The best activity you can do in summertime or hot weather is swimming. Instead of walking the dog, take the dog on a swim! If you hold on and allow your dog to take you around the pool, it becomes a powerful bonding experience for the two of you, similar to the walk.

Pacific Landing is a pet-friendly community located in Victoria’s West Shore, right on the Esquimalt Lagoon. With lots of green spaces, shade from trees and direct water access, your dog is sure to stay cool in this summer heat. Register with us today to discover new opportunities to join our community.