Dogs Trust issue warning as temperatures rise
Keep 'em cool.
The weather is officially getting hotter than we've seen this year, and with temperatures set to rise even more over the coming weeks, we need to look after our pups.
Dogs Trust has set out some tips and tricks to help dog owners keep their dogs safe and happy in the heat as heatstroke can have a terrible effect on them.
Dogs can regulate their body temperature the same way as we can so it is so important that help them with this as much as we can.
Giving their tips, the animal charity said: "Never leave your dog alone in a car, no matter what the weather is like. Even just a few minutes can prove fatal to them. On a 22-degree Celsius day, the temperature inside your car can rise by 11 degrees in just 10 minutes. Opening a window or parking in the shade does very little to offset this.
"Try to exercise your dog in the cooler parts of the day such as early in the morning or late in the evening when the sun isn’t so hot. Make sure not to over-do it either!
"It’s also important to remember the five-second test. Press your hand down on to the tarmac for five-seconds – if it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws!"
While exercising your dog, they said to remember "to bring plenty of fresh water for your dog to drink when you are exercising them – pop-up transportable bowls are great for when you’re out and about with your pooch."
They added: "Make sure your dog has a constant supply of water to drink at home too. Place a few water bowls in different locations around the house and make sure there’s one outside in the shade too.
"Another great way to make sure your dog stays hydrated is by freezing some of their favourite toys in water or making an ice-lick with frozen treats inside. This will encourage them to lick the ice which will help to hydrate them.
"Make sure your dog always has a nice, shaded spot both indoors and outdoors where they can escape the heat of the sun. On especially hot days, you can put out a damp towel for them to lie on to keep them even cooler. Make sure to replace or rewet it often though, as it can dry out quickly! Never place a damp towel over a dog as it could actually cause their temperature to rise.
It can also be a good idea to trim back particularly hairy dogs’ fur, so they won’t get as hot. Makes sure you consult your groomer about this first though."
Avoiding long car journeys is another big must in the summer, especially in areas you are likely to get stuck in traffic. Using a car sunblind to provide your dog with some shade and stopping for water is a good way to combat this.
Dogs can get sunburnt so try to keep them out of the sun as much as possible and if you're planning on putting sunscreen on them, speak to your vet beforehand.
Getting your dog a paddling pool for the garden can keep them cool or letting them get their paws wet in the sea, ocean, river or lake on a walk, just remember to keep them on lead to stay safe.
You can make a pup-sicle to keep them cool by blending a banana, three tablespoons of natural low-fat yoghurt, and a spoonful of xylitol-free peanut butter and pop it in the freezer for a few hours to set.
Always speak to your vet if you have any concerns about your dog in the sun, and remember there are ways to have fun while staying safe in the sun.