Keeping your dog healthy in the hot weather
Hot sunny days and balmy nights! Summer is here, but though we might look forward to fun in the sun, the same can’t always be said for our puppers! Australian summers are HOT and that can be a problem for our pups. Though most dogs love getting out in the great outdoors, they all need some extra care from their human parents to keep them safe and healthy throughout the summer months.
Hot tips for keeping your dog safe this summer
Dogs can quickly become dehydrated on hot days so take steps to make sure they stay hydrated:
- First, and most importantly, make sure your dog always has a bowl of fresh water available.
- Offer your pup fresh water on a hot walk, rather than letting them drink from a murky creek or stagnant puddle.
- Some breeds feel the heat more than others – brachycephalic, or short-faced dogs, like pugs or bulldogs may suffer more in the heat, so be extra careful to keep them hydrated.
- Senior dogs may also be more prone to dehydration so watch out for them on hot days.
- For overheated puppers, try adding ice cubes to keep their water cool, or simply leave an ice block out for them to lick. You could even try making some cooling frozen summer treats.
Keep cool outdoors
It’s best to avoid taking your pup out for a walk or run on really hot days, so try to keep them indoors. Dogs can’t stay cool by sweating like humans – instead panting is their cooling mechanism, but in extreme heat that’s often not enough and they can quickly start to suffer. If you are out and about, however, aim to:
- Stick to the cooler parts of the day for your walks together to prevent overheating – early morning or evening is best.
- Check the walking surface isn’t too hot for your pupper’s paws as they can get burnt on hot pavements or sand. Be ready to carry your pup over the hottest surfaces, or you could even try fitted booties. You may not see signs of burning until later when they start licking their paws or limping, and if this happens, see your vet as soon as possible.
- Consider getting a water mister if your dog has to be outdoors, or you could try a kiddy paddling pool for them to cool off in!
Protect against sunburn
Just like us, your pupper’s skin is sensitive to sunburn – especially where the fur is thin, or the smooth skin on their faces and tummies is exposed:
- Try a doggy sunscreen on exposed areas such as your dog’s nose and face – dog sunscreens are stickier so will stay on better (human sunscreen can be licked off too easily).
Watch for water dangers
Cooling off in the water can be great fun, but always take care with your dog in the water and follow the rules:
- Make sure dogs are permitted at the beach you’re visiting.
- Keep your pupper on leash if you’re not fully confident of their swimming abilities – you’ll need to be there to help them get out of the water if they seem like they are starting to struggle.
- When swimming, always keep an eye on your pup and stay close by – enthusiasm sometimes exceeds ability, and not all dogs instinctively know how to swim!
Fleas, ticks and worms are all more common in summer, and spending time outdoors means dogs are more exposed to them. In particular, fleas can spread quickly and can be distressing for your pup, and ticks, especially the paralysis tick, can be deadly if your dog isn’t fully protected:
- Make sure your pup is fully up to date with parasite prevention against fleas, ticks, worms and heartworm all year round.
How can fresh dog food help my dog keep healthy this summer?
Lyka is full of the nutrients your dog needs to keep them active and on the go throughout summer and can be served cold straight out of the fridge, providing a nice, cooling meal at the start or end of the day. Lyka meals also contain around 70% moisture which makes them an easy source of hydration too!