Summer is officially here and hopefully, you are experiencing some great weather! While many of us enjoy rising temperatures, hot temperatures and high humidity levels aren’t always good news for our pets, many of whom can struggle to cope in the heat. Your furry friend will be heavily reliant on you to keep her cool and comfortable when the mercury rises, and to help you do just that, here are all the hot weather tips you need to know for your pet this summer.
Don’t Take Your Pet on Unnecessary Journeys
Animals left alone in hot cars die. Fact. Yet, despite knowing this, many owners still insist on taking their pets on unnecessary journeys in summer every year. It may not seem particularly hot outside, but a temperature of just 84°f can equate to around 98° inside your vehicle in just a matter of minutes. Leaving your car in the shade or the windows down won’t help. The kindest thing you can do for your pet is to leave him at home or take him out of the vehicle with you.
Don’t Scrimp on the Water
Dehydration is a common problem amongst pets in the summer whose owners forget to top up their water bowls regularly. Your pet will need to drink more than usual when the weather is warm and ideally should have access to cool, fresh water at all times. Make sure you are aware of the symptoms of dehydration just in case – sunken eyes, a dry nose, loss of skin elasticity and trouble urinating are all classic signs that your pet needs urgent veterinary attention.
Don’t Walk Your Pet in the Middle of the Day
Do you fancy exercising in the roasting temperatures? No? Neither does your pet. Not only it is much more strenuous for your pet to have to move around in high temperatures, but the ground could also burn his paws. If it is too hot for you to put your hand on the asphalt, it’s too hot for your pet’s paws. Save walking, if at all, until early in the morning or later at night when the temperatures are more reasonable.
Make Sure Your Pet Has Access to Shade
If your pet lives outdoors, even if he is usually in a run or hutch, you need to be sure that he has access to some shade. Not only will this help keep him cooler, but it will also help him to avoid sunburn. Sunburn doesn’t only affect human skin; pets can be affected too. You can buy sunscreen specifically for animals, but we still recommend that your pet has somewhere cool and shady to retreat too. In the case of cats and dogs, let them utilize the kitchen or bathroom to hang out since the tiled floors and walls tend to make these areas of the home cooler.
Wearing a fur coat in the heat isn’t much fun, but your pet’s coat will help cooler air to circulate close to his skin to regulate his body temperature – provided his fur is in good condition. Brush him regularly to remove any dead hair and debris to keep his body functioning optimally. This process will also enable you to check for ticks, which tend to be prevalent in some states during the summer months. Ticks spread diseases that can make your pet sick, so it is important to use preventatives and to check for them whenever your pet has been outside.
Consider Giving Frozen Treats
Ice lollies and other frozen treats aren’t just for humans either. There are plenty of recipes online for chilled snacks that your pet can enjoy. Consider frozen tuna popsicles for your cat, or peanut butter popsicles for your dog. Just be careful not to let him choke and be sure to hold the stick at all times, or better still, use a dental chew inserted into the popsicle to enable you to hold it!
If you would like more hot weather tips and advice on the best ways to keep your pet cool this summer, contact our passionate pet care team at Mill Creek Animal Hospital today 913-268-0900!