We live in Dubai and as you most likely know the city is known for its warmer climate. It was quite a change for me coming from The Netherlands, where it sometimes feels like there’s more rain than sunshine. However, I can imagine it was also a change for Eva. Even though she moved here from Egypt, Dubai is still hotter than Cairo. During summertime, I often wondered if the heat would be too much for her. Therefore, I would like to share 5 proven ways to help beat the summer heat for dogs.
To ensure she would not get overheated we tried to minimize the time outside during the day. Not only for her but for ourselves too. Many vets recommend avoiding walking outside when the temperature goes over 25 degrees Celsius. However, in the peak of summer in a desert country, the temperature outside does not drop below 30 degrees Celsius even in the evenings. Moreover, the humidity levels are soaring too. One step outside and the sweat waves start. BUT high humidity limits the effectiveness of your dog cooling down through panting. Of course, Eva does need to walk outside to do her business. Therefore, besides early morning and late night walks, we focus on hydration, frosty snacks, cool places to rest, proper grooming, and doggie shoes.
We start with an obvious one. Always ensure your pet has fresh water available. This will help them hydrate and keep them cool. Also, keep an eye on how much your dog is drinking and remind them once in a while to go take a sip. Some dogs may forget or are too excited (especially when going out). If your dog enjoys the water, you can fill up a tub or small pool for them to play in. Keep the water natural because your dog may see it as a large water bowl and drink from it. Eva is only starting to enjoy swimming in the sea, so for now a pool might be one step too far.
Besides hydration by drinking water, you can also treat your pet to some frozen snacks to cool down. This is an effective way to train your pet during summer and help them cool down at the same time. You can just freeze some fruits (banana, blueberries) or vegetables (cucumber) which your dog can eat for an easy treat. And you can snack on them too!
Check which fruits and veggies you could safely freeze for your dog and which to avoid in this previous post: “The top dangerous foods to avoid for your dog”.
A cool place to rest
One thing Eva always loves to do after a walk or after some intense playing is laying down on the cool tile floor. There are options to buy cooling beds, however, in our apartment, the floor has the same effect. If you only have carpets or wooden flooring, a cooling bed could be a good option for your pet to cool down. There are also options for cooling vests to use when going on a walk.
Be careful with grooming your dog in summer. It may seem like the dog’s hair is too hot, however, the long hair and double coat have multiple functions. In winter it will keep your dog warm and in summer it will prevent your furry friend from overheating, getting sunburns, and other heat-related discomforts. A shorter summer cut is no problem, but it is best to either let a professional do this or only slightly cut the hair and not overdo it yourself.
In summer, walks can be difficult, especially when the pavement is hot. Try to avoid walking in the mid of the day when the heat is at its peak. When going outside, always test the temperature of the pavement with the back of your hands (by touching the pavement with the back of your hand for at least 5 seconds). If it is too hot for your hand it is too hot for your dog. In case you need to go out and need more protection for your dog’s paws, look into getting dog shoes.
When getting these dog boots, keep an eye on the following points:
- a well-made sole, to ensure nothing sharp can go through and to keep the heat out
- breathable material, to avoid overheating your dog’s paws
- easy to put on and take off, to make the experience as smooth as possible for your dog. Most likely they will not like to have anything on their feet and will need to get used to it.
With global warming peaking all over the world, it is important to keep cool. The best ways to this are to:
- Always keep your dog hydrated and have fresh water available
- Provide some cool snacks, such as frozen blueberries or banana
- Provide a shaded cool place to rest
- Be careful with grooming, some dogs have thick fur, but it protects them from the heat as well.
- Look into getting dog shoes to protect their paws
Whenever you’re in doubt and fear your dog might have a heatstroke, immediately alarm the vet.
Do you live in a hot area too? How do you protect your four-legged friend from the heat? Let us know below. The more ideas, the better we can keep our furry family safe.
Thanks for reading