5 Essential Tips for Summer Dog Safety

5 Essential Tips for Summer Dog Safety

by Holly Genser

Now, as July turns to August, many of us are experiencing the hottest days of summer, and our dogs are even more vulnerable than we are to dehydration, over-heating, and heat stroke. Those most at risk are puppies, seniors, dogs with respiratory and heart problems and dogs with short noses, such as pugs.

First, make sure you give your dog plenty of fresh cold water and keep it handy at all times. Dogs can dehydrate rapidly as they pant to cool themselves. Ice cubes in the water keep it cool longer. Veterinarian Dr. Patrick Mehany from Petmd.com also recommends that you feed your dog wet food rather than dry on hot days.

Second, take frequent breaks when walking or exercising and allow your pooch to drink. Dr. Mehany suggests rest breaks in the shade every 15 minutes for healthy dogs and more often for less fit ones.

Third, don't shave off your dog's fur. Dr. Karen Campbell, a veterinary dermatologist, says that while cutting off a dog's coat might seem like a good idea in summer, dog hair actually insulates against hot as well as cold weather. When you cut it off, you actually make the dog more susceptible to not only heat but to sunburn as well.

Fourth, keep your dog in a shady place, preferably indoors with a fan or air conditioning. Do not tie her in the yard where she can tangle the chain in the sun and away from water. Dogs who love to go to the beach also need shade and access to plenty of water.

Fifth, when you travel, never, ever leave your dog alone in a hot car even with the window open, as they can get dehydrated, get sunstroke or even die.

New Products Help Keep Your Dog Safe and Cool

In addition to taking these precautions, iCool pads, vests, and collars can also help keep your pup cool. They hold just the right amount of water to cool your dog through evaporation. Simply recharge them regularly by adding more water and writing out.

You can use iCool pads in the house, outside, and in dog carriers. The iCool vests help the dog's chest evaporate during walks and have a loop for attaching the leash. Both the vests and neck wraps use hook and loop closures to secure them on your furry friend.

The photos below show an iCool vest and a carrier pad. They come in various colors, too. Click on a photo below for more information.

iCool Dog Vest iCool Dog Carrier Pad