Updated: Jul 14, 2020
Here in the Uk we don't get a huge amount of hot weather, but when it does arrive we all want to be outside soaking up the sun while we can. Basking in the sun is great for your vitamin D production, helping to promote healthy bones, blood cells and boost your immune system.
Our furless bodies help to keep us cool via thermoregulation, however our four legged friends may struggle in the heat with their thick coats causing them to be more at risk of discomfort, sunburn and serious health problems posed by overheating or dehydration.
For us, as dog walkers, this time of year is great for walking our canine companions however we must always be mindful of them to ensure they stay cool and hydrated
throughout their walks. Heatstroke can be deadly for dogs, therefore at Spring Meadow Pet Care we take our responsibility very seriously when we’re out with our canine friends. To ensure the welfare of the dogs we make sure we stay in the shade and off any hot pavements, and use woodland walks whenever possible to make sure the dogs are out of the sun. Here are a list of a few things we do to make sure your dog is safe, hydrated and cool while walking in the sunny weather.
Water will be readily available to your dog before, during and after the walk.
Dogs must have a plentiful supply of water whenever they are walking. Just like their owners, dogs can become dehydrated quickly so a water bottle on hand is a great way to ensure your dog is hydrated if there are no fresh water streams around.
When a dog is hot it tends to pant; evaporating water from the tongue, causing excess heat to leave the body. Panting uses up a lot of water which is why you should ensure you always carry a water bottle with you.
This advice is particularly important for the older dogs who's kidneys may not be as efficient at conserving water and are therefore more at risk of dehydration.
While we all tuck into an ice-cream in the hot weather we mustn't forget about our furry friends. A good way to keep your dog cool and happy is to make a batch of icy treats.
1) Frozen tuna bites: Freeze the spring water from a can of tuna. Add some tuna flakes for extra deliciousness.
2) Frozen carrot: pop a carrot into the freezer for a handy quick nutritious treat.
3) Pup-sicles: Peanut butter and banana popsicles - Blend all together and freeze
4 tbsp peanut butter
12 ounces plain or vanilla yogurt
Always ensure your dogs is supervised and these frozen goodies are treats and therefore shouldn't replace the regular water and food.
Paddling in streams
Rhymney River, River Taff and River Ely
Plan your walk In advance so that you can head to a stream or a river to cool down.
Look for safe and clean streams and rivers so your dog can have a paddle or even a swim if they are feeling brave. At Spring Meadow Pet Care we have a range of local rivers and streams that your dogs can cool off in.
Every dog is different, some may be born a water baby, others may be a little more nervous so its best to let the dog get in at their own pace and depth. Repetition is key for nervous dogs, take them down to a familiar spot and maybe even take their favourite toy so they can slowly work their way in.
Heading to the beach may seem like a great idea on hot days, however the beach doesn't provide much cover from the sun. Therefore a woodland walk is idea as the trees provide a good amount of shade so that your canine companion can enjoy the walk without overheating from the sun. The woodlands are a great place for your canine adventures with lots of new smells and tastes.