We hope you enjoyed our last blog where we featured ‘Three Great Places to walk your Dog around Mirfield’. Given all the sunshine we’ve had lately there’s never been a better time than right now to explore the glorious countryside that sits right on our doorstep.
But with the mercury rising daily, it’s important that we consider that dogs can easily overheat; with some breeds, particularly types with short noses and thick coats feeling it more than most. Listed below are some breeds that typically find it more difficult in the heat:
· Boston Terrier
· Shih Tzu
There are some simple guidelines to prevent your dog from overheating; after all, now the summer is upon us, we don’t want to miss out on all that healthy sunshine. On really hot days, the one’s where we are in the 30 degree plus territory, it may be better to pick the early morning or evenings for a dog walk. This is great news for those working full-time and just now means it is still light way past 9pm.
However, for dog walks in the heat of the day, a few simple measures will keep your pooch cool and happy. Remember dogs shed heat in a completely different way to us humans: heat is mainly lost through panting or through sweat glands in the paws. If you can imagine taking a brisk walk in 30 degree heat wearing a thick woolly jumper, then that is what it feels like for a long haired dog. The three walks featured in our previous blog are ideal choices because it means they are walking on soft cool ground rather than a hot pavement. Walking across the flags in our garden here at Beauty Petz the other day in bare feet brought home how uncomfortable this would be for a dog on a lengthy walk, especially when you consider that dogs lose body temperature through the paw pads.
Most people interested enough to read this will know that dogs must never be left in a car in hot weather, even for a few minutes. I got in my car the other day after being parked up for only 10 minutes and the temperature climbed to 47 degrees!
Avoiding Canine Heatstroke
Signs of a dog overheating include: collapse, excessive dribbling and panting, vomiting and general fatigue. If heatstroke is suspected, wet the dog’s hair with cool water and contact your vet immediately. To avoid heatstroke in the first place, however:
· Take your dog out for a walk at the start or end of the day
· Take regular breaks when walking your dog
· Try the ground with your hand to see if it’s too hot
· Instead of walking, try training them with ‘sits’ and ‘stays’ etc.
· Find a clean and safe river for them to swim in or take a trip to the seaside
· For shorter haired dogs, pop a lightweight T-shirt on them
· Take regular water breaks
· If it’s an evening walk, stop off at a dog friendly pub (my favourite)
The Importance of Grooming
Finally, and we would say this I know, but make sure your dog’s grooming is maintained, especially for longer haired dogs. Mats and dirty coats in general can prevent a cooling air flow and cause unnecessary discomfort as well as encouraging maggots and fleas. We all like a refreshing shower after a hot day and dogs will feel equally refreshed if they are regularly bathed throughout the summer months.
We Love Buster the Pug
Just last week we had Buster the Pug in for a bath and he absolutely loved it. Why not give Joanne a ring and book your pooch in too for a great summer treat.
See you soon…