Summer Health Tips

Keeping you dog safe and cool in the summer

Dogs tend to function more efficiently in cooler weather than warm. Every year as the mercury climbs, dog owners need to take steps to protect their dogs from the heat.

You can easily safeguard your dog in the summer with just a couple of easy steps.

    1. Make sure you leave your pet with plenty of clean cool water (with ice cubes).

    2. Make sure if your pet is left outside that they can easily access shade all day.

    3. Walk your dog moderately in the early morning or after dusk.

    4. Never leave your pet in a hot car. Not even for a short run in the store. You may think that you are doing your dog a favor by letting him or her ride to the store with you but you are really better to leave your pet at home.

    5. Brush your dog daily, this helps thin out the unwanted undercoat and help the skin to ventilate.

    6. If you take your pet out you might want to consider buying a cooling cloth, made of chamois-like material soaked in ice water, wrung out and draped over the dog like a horse blanket. It will help your dog stay cool.

    7. Never ride your dog in the back of a pick-up truck without a camper shell. Your dog could easily jump out while you are driving down the road and get seriously hurt or even killed. If your pick-up truck does not have a camper shell with working windows consider putting the dog in a crate and clipping a small fan to the crate to help keep the dog cool.

    8. Another point to remember is that dogs perspire from their foot pads and their tongues, panting allows your dog to cool off naturally, but abnormally heavy panting could be a sign that an overheated dog is nearing a state of distress.

Dogs can suffer heat stroke. If you notice your dog is breathing loudly and rapidly, you may be looking at an early symptom heat stroke. You should seek Veterinary help.

Remember that summer also brings flies, mosquitoes, ticks and other harmful parasites. You might want to consider getting your dog on a preventive heart worm medication.