Babette the dog

6 tips to keep your dog cool during the summer!

Ah yes, it’s summertime! Enjoying the sun, the beach and dipping your toes (or paws) in the sea! Loving life! But, make sure you’re well prepared and informed before taking off into the heat. Your dog might not love the warm weather that much! And remember, if you’re thirsty, your pup will definitely be too! Check out the blog post for the best heat tips and tricks to keep your dog cool!

Every summer I read about people in the newspapers who forget their dog in the car or who go for hour long hikes in the heath. And every time I think “But why would you do that? This is basic knowledge, right?”. But maybe it isn’t, and I want to help set the record straight!

These are the 6 best tips to keep your dog safe from the heat of this summer:

1. Don’t leave your dog in the car!

Okay, this really is a basic one but you’d be amazed by how many people still leave their dog in the car when parked in the sun. Just don’t do it! And not even with the windows open. The car will heat up in minutes, turning it into a microwave in a heartbeat.

Did you know the temperature in your car can rise up to 40 degrees Celsius within 10 minutes?

This heat is life threatening for dogs since they can only cool down using their paws and by panting. Dogs can’t sweat so it takes them a lot more time to cool off. Always take that into account when going for a walk in the sun or doing sports with your pup.

Leaving the windows of your car open while leaving your dog in the car is also dangerous. This won’t help cool off the car. And on top of that, it’s a chocking hazard. When dogs are left in a hot car with the windows open, they’ll put their head out for fresh air. After a while they’ll get tired and drop their head which makes their heads slide down in between the glass and the frame of the door. And that’s how they get stuck and can’t get out anymore.

So: don’t leave your dog in the car. Not even for a minute.

2. Skip the park, go swimming!

Yes, the park is nice but it can heat up quite fast when it’s summertime! Definitely when your dog is a runner. Skip the park for once and choose a nice lake in the neighborhood to take a swim with your dog!

Check out this blog post for the best swimming spots in and around Antwerpen!

By running a lot, your pup will heat up fast. They’ll go looking for somewhere to cool down. If they can’t find it, they go looking for alternative ways to cool down. Such as lying in the cool grass with their belly. But this doesn’t cool them down fast enough. So, go looking for some waters near you to take a dip. You’ll love it too!

3. (Drinking) water! Water! Water!

Let’s go to the beach! I love a day at the beach with my dog. Running around the beach, rolling in the sand and catching the tennis ball. My dog goes wild! No wonder she drinks water like crazy. So make sure to take enough drinking water for your dog along with you. Otherwise your dog will drink form the nearest water source, which is the sea.

Prevent your pup from drinking sea water since it’s super salty. This can result in salt poisoning. This is life threatening and must be treated immediately. So rather preventing it than curing it!  

4. Prevent burned paws. Walk in the morning or the evening

Do you love hikes with your pup? Yes, me too! But make sure to check the ground before going for a walk with your dog. Concrete can heat up super fast and can result in burned paw pads.

Make sure the ground isn’t too hot for your dog to walk on by putting the palm of your hand on the ground and checking the temperature. Is it too hot for you? If so, it’ll be too hot for your dog. Rather walk your dog in the mornings or the evenings. The ground isn’t that hot in the mornings or had the time to cool off in the evenings. Or rather go for a walk in the woods. The trees will prevent the sun from peering through all of the time and natural grounds don’t heat up as much.

5. Overheating? Cool down your dog with a cool (not ice cold!) towl on his stomach

Did your dog overheat? Don’t panic! Make sure you put a towel, soaked in cool water, on his belly and make his paws wet with cool water.

It’s important not to use (ice)cold water! If you use cold water, the body will think it receives a signal that the dog is cold which will make him heat up even more. We really want to prevent that!

Put the towel on the belly of your pup, not on his back. The organs of your dog need to be cooled. This way you’ll help your pup to cool down the fastest.

6. Call the nearest vet

Make sure you have the coordinates of the nearest vet with you. From the moment your dog is overheated, you can call the vet while you are making sure to do everything you can to cool down your dog.

Are you going on holiday? Make sure you do some research for the best vet in town from where you’re staying. If something happens, you’ll know where to go and you can act fast.

I hope these tips will help you! Do you have other tips for the community to take into account? Let me know in the comments!

By the way, don’t you just love the cover picture by the beautiful @babette_the_dog

Oh, and let me know you’re reading the blog by posting a little insta story about this blog and tagging @dogsofantwerpen !

Jowkes, ciaokes, (b)aaikes!

Jill Cools
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