If your area is going through a heat wave, you’ve probably experienced first-hand how uncomfortable it can be. In many cases, the sweltering summer temperatures can even put your health in danger.
But humans aren’t the only ones who have to worry about the heat. Just like us, dogs face many health risks when the temperatures soar. So, while managing the hot weather with popsicles and pool parties, be sure you don’t forget about your furry friend.
How hot is too hot for dogs? The answer to that question may surprise you. Here is all you need to know about protecting your canine companion during the dog days of summer.
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What Temperatures Are Dangerous for Dogs?
So, how hot is too hot for dogs? Your dog’s health may be in danger once the temperatures rise above 75 degrees Fahrenheit. While this may not seem too hot for most humans, you should remember that dogs have thick coats of fur that can trap heat.
They also don’t have sweat glands, which can make cooling down even more difficult for them.
Your dog can still safely go outside at this temperature, but you should keep a close eye on them and ensure they have plenty of water. You should also keep an eye out for any signs of overheating.
Temperatures above 90 degrees can be even more harmful to your dog. Even short periods outdoors in this weather might put your dog’s safety at risk.
So, when the temperatures get this high, you should keep your dog inside as much as possible. It may feel tempting to play outside with your dog when the weather is nice and warm, but it will not be much fun for your dog.
How To Know if Your Dog Is Overheating?
Now that you know that answer to “How hot is too hot for dogs?” knowing the signs of overheating could save your dog’s life. If your pet shows any of these symptoms, it may need some help cooling down.
- Heavy panting
- Excessive drooling
- Difficulty breathing
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Deep red mouth
- Difficulty walking
- Dizziness and stumbling
Is your dog showing any of these symptoms on a hot day? Bring them to a cooler environment, provide fresh water, and contact a veterinarian as soon as possible!
Why You Should Worry About Overheating in Dogs?
If you’re a dog owner, the last thing you want is for your pup to feel unhappy. But when the summer weather gets intense, it can leave your dog feeling uncomfortable, stressed, and sick.
Dogs can’t communicate how they feel. So, once you start noticing symptoms of overheating in your dog, there’s a good chance they’ve been feeling overheated for quite some time.
In some cases, overheating can even threaten your dog’s life. Heat stroke and heat exhaustion can often be fatal in pets. So, if you want your beloved pet to live a long and healthy life, be sure to keep them in mind when the temperatures rise.
Can Hot Sidewalks Hurt Your Dog?
Have you ever stepped on a sidewalk during the summer and had it burn your feet? Chances are, your dog has, too. Pavement can get super hot in the summer, even on days when the weather isn’t unusually warm.
As a result, many dogs come home with some pretty sore paws after summertime walks.
So, how do you tell if the sidewalk is too hot for your dog? Simply place your bare hand on the sidewalk for at least ten seconds. If you can do that without burning your hand, the sidewalk should be safe for your dog to walk on.
On days when the sidewalk is too hot for your dog’s safety, it may be best to keep them on the grass. Or, you could get your dog a pair of protective booties! They’ll not only keep them safe from the heat, but they will protect them from any sharp objects lying around as well.
How To Keep Your Dog Safe in the Heat?
Sometimes, avoiding the summer heat isn’t an option. Not every home has proper air conditioning. Or maybe your dog is getting restless and needs some time outdoors.
No matter the reason, there are plenty of ways to keep your dog cool in the summer! When you keep these tips in mind, you can help protect your pup’s health and comfort.
- Make sure your dog has access to clean water at all times.
- If your dog is outside, always provide an area where they can lay in the shade.
- Take your dog for walks early in the morning or late in the evening, when temperatures tend to be lower.
- Give your dog some frozen treats. You can buy dog-friendly ice cream at many pet stores. Frozen bananas and frozen watermelon make good treats for your dog as well.
- Never leave your dog alone in a car. Even if you crack the windows, the temperatures inside a car during the summer can be deadly.
- Put a cooling bandana around your dog’s neck. This will not only help them keep cool, but it’ll look super stylish as well!
- Buy a cooling mat for your dog to lay on.
How To Exercise Your Dog in Hot Weather?
When the weather is hot and humid, the last thing you and your dog want to do is exercise. But regardless of the weather, keeping active is an essential part of staying healthy.
Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to keep your dog active even when it’s too hot to play fetch or go for a run. Here are a few fun ideas to keep in mind:
- Take your dog for a swim at the beach or the pool! Just make sure to keep an eye on them at all times. Also, dress them in a life jacket for an extra layer of safety.
- If your dog isn’t much of a swimmer, consider turning on the sprinkler and letting them run around in the water.
- Try getting creative with indoor playtime. Tug-of-war, treat-finding games, and fetch are just a few ways to keep your dog active from the comfort of an air-conditioned home.
- Head over to your favorite pet-friendly store. Public businesses usually have great air-conditioning, making it the perfect environment to walk your dog around.
Dog Breeds at Risk of Overheating
Any dog breed can overheat in the summer. But certain breeds have a heightened risk of heat-induced sickness.
Some of the most vulnerable breeds are brachycephalic dogs. The shape of these dogs’ snouts often makes breathing a little more difficult, especially in hot or humid weather.
Here are a few examples of brachycephalic dogs:
- Chow Chow
- Boston Terrier
- English Spaniel
- Japanese Chin
Is your furry friend on this list? If they are, you may need to keep a closer watch on them during the summertime.
As long as you help them stay cool and provide plenty of water, your dog should be fine when the thermometers rise!
Should I Shave My Dog To Help Keep Them Cool?
When you look at your long-haired pup on a hot summer day, it can be hard not to feel a little sympathy for them. After all, walking around with a thick winter coat in the hot weather doesn’t sound ideal.
Giving your dog a haircut may provide a little bit of relief. Just make sure not to cut it too short. A professional dog groomer will know the best way to trim your dog’s fur without affecting the insulation.
Heat waves are more than just a bummer—they can be a serious risk to your dog’s health. As the temperatures soar above 75 degrees Fahrenheit, so do the chances of your dog getting sick.
Fortunately, your furry friend doesn’t have to suffer. There are plenty of ways to keep your dog cool when the summer heat is at its highest, whether it’s keeping them inside the air-conditioned house or setting up plenty of water bowls in your shaded backyard.
Are you looking for a fun way to keep your dog nice and cool? Consider checking out our list of the top five best puppy pools!