Remember how desperate we were for warmth during those long, cold winter months? This can be hard to believe when the mercury rises and the summer heat turns into a little too much of a good thing. This can be especially true for our pets. As the days get longer and the weather gets warmer, it’s important for our furry friends to remain cool, comfortable and safe. Keep these tips in mind to protect your pet during the hottest months.
1. Dog and cat coats don’t go in the closet. Don’t forget our pets have to wear their coats year-round, making it easy for them to get overheated. Limit exercise on extremely hot days, or try going out for a walk early in the morning or later in the evening when the sun isn’t so intense. Watch for signs of heat fatigue, like heavy panting, wobbly legs, thick drool or in extreme cases, diarrhea or vomiting. If you notice these symptoms, move your pet to a cool place, cover them with a damp towel and contact your vet immediately.
2. Ensure your dog is hydrated and healthy. Since you’ll probably be spending a lot of time being active outdoors, it’s crucial to make sure your pet stays hydrated. On an extra warm day, take breaks and refresh often with cold water. Also keep in mind that feeding your pet wet food is a great way to keep them more hydrated. If you are like the over 62% of Canadians that didn’t know this, consider introducing a mixed-feed diet to your pet’s routine.
3. Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen. Just like humans, pets need sunscreen to protect them from sunburn and skin cancer. While their fur provides some protection, it’s important to frequently apply sunscreen on your dog, especially on areas like their bellies where they don’t have much fur. Ask your vet about options for pet-friendly sunscreen. – NC