We all know that warm temperatures can affect our dogs, but how hot is too hot? There are numerous variables to determine what temperature your dog can be comfortable in, and we will discuss a few guidelines to follow.
In general, most dogs who have access to circulating air, fresh water and shade can probably handle heat in the 85-90 degree range; however, there is no hard rule about temperature limits.
How to Determine if it is Too Hot to Walk Your Dogs
Age, breed and obesity play a large role in how dogs handle the heat. Generally, the older the dog and the more they weigh, the harder it is for them to handle heat. Brachycephalic dogs in particular, (those with short snouts like bulldogs or pugs) cannot cool themselves off as efficiently as other dogs. When the pavement is too hot for you to touch or walk on barefoot, it's probably too hot for your dog to walk on it as well.
How to Keep Your Dog Cool in the Heat
When you do walk your dog in the summer, there are a number of steps owners can take to keep their pets cool, including:
- It's always best to exercise your dog during the coolest part of the day.
- Make sure to give your dog plenty of water during and after periods of being outside.
- You can use a raised cot which allows cool air to circulate under the cot (cooling your dog down).
- If your dog spends a good deal of time outside during the day, make sure they have plenty of access to shade. Your dog may also enjoy spending some time in a kiddie pool.
- Signs of heatstroke
The Dangers of Heatstroke for Dogs and Other Pets
Heatstroke is a serious disease that requires immediate medical attention. Once signs of heat stroke occur, there is only a small window of time before serious damage or death can occur. Below is a list of signs of overheating, but if you ever suspect your dog is overheated, it's always best to bring them to us, or the nearest vet. You will want to start cooling down your dog before and during your way to the vet.
To cool down their body temperature, make sure your pet is in a cool, shady area. You can use a fan to cool them off as well as using cool towels or water.
Signs of Heatstroke include:
- Increased temperature above 104 degrees Fahrenheit
- Vigorous panting
- Difficulty breathing
- Mild weakness
- Bloody diarrhea
Summer can be a great time to get outside with your dogs and other pets, but safety is key. Make sure to have your pets regularly examined by a trained veterinarian. If you have any questions, give us a call, we are here to help.