How hot is TOO hot for your dog? With temperatures hovering around 100 degrees here every day into the foreseeable future, we have to schedule our dog fun in the early morning (evening remain too hot) or around the water. The temperatures are too hot for our dogs’ paws and for them to cool themselves efficiently, putting them at risk for heat-related illness.
Recently Petplan pet insurance released this interesting infographic about safe temperatures for your dog:
As you can see, the smaller dogs can tolerate the heat a little better than the larger dogs–unless yours is a brachycephalic dog. (Petplan noted that the risk of heat-related incidents is nearly twice as high for breeds such as Boxers, Bulldogs and Pugs.) Senior dogs, very young puppies, and obese dogs also have a tougher time handling high temps. The claims the insurance company sees for heat-related illness average $2,606 for heat stroke, $398 for dehydration and $913 for hyperthermia.
6 Ways to Help Your Dog Beat the Heat
- Chill out with a tasty treat. Freeze low-sodium chicken broth in a popsicle mold or ice cube tray for dogs and cats to enjoy on a hot day.
- Hose down hot pavement, patios and porches before letting your pets outside. A little water could go a long way toward keeping paws cool and avoiding paw pad burns. Pet parents can also run cool water over their dog’s feet.
- Say yes to ice water. Adding ice to pets’ water bowls creates a game for curious canines—they’ll bob for ice cubes and stay cool and hydrated in the process!
- Cool the crate. If your pet will be crated while you’re away, try freezing two-liter water bottles and placing them on top of the crate. They’ll give off cool air and help keep the spot cool.
- Wear a cold compress. A refrigerated wet bandana will help keep Fido cool and stylish this summer—this is especially effective because of the temperature receptors around dogs’ necks.
- Make a splash. A backyard baby pool is a great way for pets to stay cool (and it’s fun too!). Some cats may even choose to toe the water.