Feeling the heat

Taking care of your pet in the summer
With another hot summer predicted, it’s essential for dog owners to brush up on some top tips for keeping your pets happy in the sun. At Stow vets, we routinely see dogs that have suffered from high temperatures during the summer months. Here’s how you can best keep them cool.

Dogs can’t cool down as easily as we can. They mainly use panting to keep cool, and can’t sweat through all of their skin, only their paw pads. Any dog can feel uncomfortable in hot weather and all dog owners need to be aware of the signs of overheating and heatstroke.

∙ Panting heavily
∙ Dribbling
∙ Wobbling or having trouble standing up
∙ Bright red gums

Flat faced dogs often have breathing difficulties. While they may cope most of the time, hot weather can make breathing more difficult impairing their ability to cool themselves. Dogs with thick coats might need help cooling down during a heatwave. Be especially careful with older dogs or dogs with ongoing health problems. Overweight dogs are also susceptible to very hot weather.

While dogs still need regular walks during hot weather, walk early or late, avoid the hottest part of the day; it’s not just the sun from above but hot pavements can risk burning your dog’s paws. Set an easy pace – an energetic dog they may need to be encouraged to slow down on hot days.

Is your dog a little hairier than average? Regular brushing can really help them in hot weather as it helps to remove some of that insulating fluff. Your dog may also appreciate a trim for the summer. If you don’t feel confident with clippers, take them to a professional groomer, they will know the best way to treat your dog’s fur and keep it in top condition.

Dog Days out – Top Tips
Never leave your dog alone in the car. With an outside temperature of 30 degrees the temperature inside the car can reach over 50 degrees.

Carry plenty of water and a bowl if you’ll be out all day. Your dog will need a drink on the go.

Stay safe if you let your dog have a swim. A nice stream can be great fun for your dog but watch out for strong currents or stagnant water.

Carrie Collins
Clinical Director and Head Vet of Stow Vets
The Milton branch of Stow vets has a professional groomer taking bookings from May.

June-July 2019