Your dog loves riding in the car with you and playing in the grass on warm, sunny days. But when it gets really hot, keep Fido indoors where the air conditioning can keep your best friend cool.
Like people, pets can suffer from all kinds of heat-related problems, like heat stroke, dehydration and respiratory distress. Some days, the safest thing for your cat or dog is a lazy day inside your home.
Here are five ways to keep Fluffy and Fido safe and cool this summer:
- Put out extra bowls of water indoors and outdoors so your pets can drink as much as they need. Panting is your pet’s way of cooling down by evaporating fluids from the respiratory tract. But those fluids need replacing. Look in the pet store for water alternatives that replace electrolytes. And drop a couple of ice cubes into Fido’s water dish so the water is nice and cool.
- Water isn’t just for drinking in the summer: Letting your pets stand in it or play in it will help keep them cool on hot days.
- If you’re outdoors with your pet, stay in the shade under a big tree or an awning. Too much sun can disorient your pet and even cause heatstroke. Short-haired pets can even get sunburned if they’re in the sun for too long.
- If you’re leaving the house without your pets, leave them indoors and leave the air conditioning on. If you’re taking them with you, don’t leave them unattended in a hot car, even with the windows cracked. It doesn’t take long for a dog to become overheated or dehydrated enough to get sick — or even die.
- Exercise your pets early in the morning or late in the evening when the sun is not so hot. And keep them on the lawn and away from asphalt; hot pavement can burn a pet’s paws.