The temperature on some summer days can be unbearable for humans even with the thin and sparse clothing. Now, imagine how your dogs with their thick fur and coats must feel. It is your duty to ensure that they are very comfortable even at extreme temperatures.
How can I tell when it is too hot to take my dog for a walk?
Outdoor activities in extreme summer temperatures can be harmful to your dogs, but they still their exercise. Here are some tips to help you tell if it is too hot out for your dog:
The 5-second rule: The rule states that if you put the back of your hand on the pavement and you cannot hold it there for 5 seconds, then it is too hot to walk your dog. The rule makes sense because the back of your hand is quite sensitive and even though your dog has paws that are not that sensitive, it is best to err on the side of caution.
The temperature reading. If you feel the temperature is too high to be out in the sun, it probably is. So, find some indoor activity to engage in with your dog
If your dog starts panting at an increased rate just a few minutes into the walk, it is a sign that it’s time to return to cooler areas – home.
Aside the fact that the hot ground and pavement can be too hot for your dog, their paws can also get burnt which will be highly distressing.
Some dog breeds are more prone to danger from increased temperature than some others; dog breeds such as mastiffs, pugs and bulldogs have “collapsed” faces that may already make it difficult to breathe, thus aggravating breathing difficulties that accompany extremely high temperatures.
If the humidity levels are too high, dogs may not be able to cool themselves naturally by panting and this will result in an increase in their internal body temperatures. It therefore becomes imperative that you seek ways to make them comfortable and to avoid the heat:
- Take your dog swimming, but rinse off the salt and chlorine after
- Stay inside air-conditioned rooms and play games or just “chill”
- Give them a cool bath
- Install sprinklers in your yard or hose them down when the temperature is high
Regardless of the heat, it is necessary that your dog still gets their exercise. You can modify their exercise routine and try out some new activities.
- Go for walks very early in the morning before the sun gets really hot
- If you must go for walks in the afternoon, make use of shaded and grassy areas rather than places with concrete floors and pavements
- Go swimming in lakes or pools
By being careful and by paying attention to your dog, you will be able to protect them from the harmful effects of the sun and still have fun in the process. Have a great summer!!!