Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Dog Days of Summer

Although this Texas summer has been mild in comparison to previous summers, it's still hot out there.

I have three dogs at home that I worry about while I'm at work so I used the library's Discovery@Tarleton service to locate some tips on keeping your beloved pets cool on a hot day.

Here are 10 tips I found from an article titled "Top Tips for a Cool Dog This Summer from Benny The Dog" from PR Newswire:

1. Provide plenty of fresh water

Always have fresh, cool water available at all times. Keep the water bowl in the shade and remember to carry a water bottle on walks.

2. Never leave your dog in the car on a hot day

Even when left for only a few minutes can cause brain damage or death. A car retains heat, even in the shade. Locked inside a car a dog can't cool down through panting because the air is too warm. An open window is not sufficient to keep a car cool enough.

3. Always provide access to shade

Ensure there is a shady area for your dog to retreat to. The temperature in the shade is considerably cooler than sitting under the sun.

4. Check for signs of heatstroke

Look out for early warning signs; excessive panting and drooling, a rapid heart rate, bright red tongue, very red gums or dizziness. In severe cases there could be; shock, coma, convulsions and loss of consciousness.

5. Exercise in the cooler hours

Early morning or late evening, walking in the cooler parts of the day is more comfortable for both dog and owner. Reduce exercise intensity on hotter days.

6. Go swimming

For water loving dogs swimming is one of the best forms of exercise in hot weather. Include water fetch toys to safely increase enjoyment for both dog and owner.

7. Use a dog cooling jacket

For longer walks or days out consider using a dog cooling jacket. This provides evaporative cooling, exchanging the dog's heat for the cool water stored in the jacket.

8. Use a cooling pet mat

These specialist dog beds use cooling gel technology to create a lower temperature than your dog.

9. Give your pet a frozen dog toy

Specially designed freezing toys can provide a satisfying treat to cool dogs on hot days.

10. Use dog boots

As heat rises from the ground, concrete or tarmac surfaces can become hot. Dogs both absorb and release heat through their paws. Boots help to isolate the heat and offer protection from hot pavements.

"Top Tips for a Cool Dog This Summer from Benny The Dog." PR Newswire 30 June 2014. Business Insights: Essentials. Web. 16 July 2014.

How do you keep your pets cool in the summer? 

Want to find more helpful hints using Discovery@Tarleton

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