As we all know, British summers are a changeable and unpredictable affair, and hot weather is hardly guaranteed. However there will always be the odd sunny day and even the occasional heatwave so it’s important to know how to keep your dog cool and safe in the summer months. Protection dogs may look tough but they too need protecting from the potentially harmful effects of the sun just like any other canine companion. Here are our top tips for keeping your protection dog happy and healthy in the heat.
Lots of water
Just as with humans, dogs dehydrate in the heat so it is important to make sure that they have access to plentiful, clean water throughout the day. Even when out on a walk, carry water with you so that your protection dog can drink as often as they are thirsty.
Never leave you dog in the car
Your protection dog may seem indestructible but all dogs are vulnerable to hear stroke in the summer. Don’t ever leave a dog in a parked car even for what may seem a short amount of time. Cars can get extremely hot, extremely quickly and your dog can overheat within 10 minutes.
Walk during cooler hours
Think carefully about when you take your dog out for a walk in the summer months. It may be smart to get into a routine of going early in the morning and late in the evening to avoid the hottest temperatures for both you and your dog. Stay out of the heat of the day if you can.
Keep drives short
If you have a staycation planned make sure to keep windows open and air circulating on your journey. Take regular breaks for your dog to stretch its legs and make sure that it can drink throughout the drive. Be attentive to signs that your dog may be overheating or dehydrating.
Check paths and pavements
Tarmaced and paved surfaces are usually made of dark coloured materials which absorb and retain heat more than you might think. Check the pavement using the back of your hand. If it’s uncomfortable for your hand, then don’t subject the soft pads of your protection dog’s paws to that heat. Stick to fields and forests instead.