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How To Keep Your (K9) Cool

Summer Care for your Pet

Summer is here – woohoo! With the warm weather, our moods rise with the temperature. We are keen to get outside and enjoy every minute of the long-awaited sunshine. After being bundled up under layers all winter, we know to put on a hat and sunscreen to keep our skin safe. While it’s obvious how we adapt our routines for summer, we don’t often consider how the change in seasons affects our fur buddies.

Did you know that some breeds are sun sensitive? Doggie sunscreen is hardly practical – can you imagine the mess?! However, a UV protectant shirt is a good idea for short-haired breeds to protect their skin from getting too much sun and burning.

Just as we know to hydrate more in the summer, so should they. Ensure you bring along enough water for both you and Baxter so no one becomes dehydrated or overheats. Long walks on hot summer days can easily become too much, especially for breeds with short snouts like our beloved Frenchies and Bostons. Shih Tzus are also prone to overheating due to their short noses and long hair. A trip to the groomer is a great idea to keep long-haired dog’s cooler.

If you’re planning to be outside all day at the park or beach, consider a cooling vest or coat to keep your fur baby cool and prevent heatstroke. Once soaked in cool water, these will help to keep your pup’s temperature down. That, combined with seeking out shady spots, should ensure you can play all day.

If water activities are on your summer fun list, consider getting a lifejacket for every member of your family, including your fur baby. It’s a common misconception that all dogs know how to swim. While some dogs are great swimmers, they can easily overdo it, getting themselves into trouble. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, especially if you’re far away from shore, Stand Up Paddleboarding, or on a boat.

And lastly, don’t ever leave your canine companion in the car – not even for a minute or two. If you don’t want to sit in your car with the windows rolled up, neither does he! Our vehicles turn into ovens during summer months. Even at a cool 21 degrees outside, your car can heat up to over 37 degrees in less than 30 minutes. Nobody wants to sit inside a hot car, so if you know you have to make a stop and you can’t bring your fur buddy inside the store with you, leave him at home.  

Kathryn Anderson is a health enthusiast, fitness instructor, avid traveller and animal-lover who loves inspiring others to lead a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Find her online at http://coffeeandmascara.org.