2007 Articles

Keeping Your Canine Cool This Summer

Keeping Your Canine Cool This Summer

© 2006 The American Kennel Club, Inc.

With excessive heat warnings posted and searing triple-digit temperatures experienced across the country, taking special care to protect your pets from the dangerous effects of scorching heat is crucial.

“Extreme heat is a very real, fast-acting threat to pets,” said Gina Lash, American Kennel Club® spokesperson.  “Keep your dog out of hot cars, especially one that is unattended. When it’s only 80 degrees outside, the inside of a car can heat up to a deadly 120 degrees or more in just minutes. Leaving the windows partially rolled down will not help.”

The American Kennel Club offers these additional tips to help keep your dog safe this summer:
Make sure your dog has access to plenty of cool, fresh water 24 hours a day. If your dog travels with you, bring along water and a bowl.

Never leave your dog unattended in direct sunlight. Heatstroke can occur and lead to brain damage or death. Signs of heatstroke are panting, drooling, rapid pulse and fever. Immediately immerse the dog in cool water and seek emergency veterinary assistance.

If kept outside, make sure your pet has access to a shaded and well-ventilated area. Remember that doghouses are not good shelter during the summer, as they can trap heat.

Avoid strenuous exercise on extremely hot days. Take walks in the early mornings or evenings, when the sun’s heat is less intense.
Be aware that asphalt can quickly get hot enough to burn the pads of dogs’ paws. Walk your dog on the grass or dirt, where it’s cooler.

If traveling with your dog by car, keep the interior at cool temperatures. For more travel tips, visit: www.akc.org/public_education/travel.cfm

For more summer safety tips, visit: www.akc.org/public_education/summer.cfm