With any dog, it’s important to be conscious of how well (or how poorly) they handle various temperatures. With my senior pugs, it’s extremely important to be conscious of the heat because they overheat very easily. They start panting before humans even feel uncomfortable. So on days when it’s uncomfortably warm for humans, we have to be careful to make sure they don’t overheat. Since bringing Frank & Beans home over a year ago, we’ve learned several ways that help dogs beat the heat.
10 ways to help dogs beat the heat:
1. Use air conditioning. Prior to getting the pugs, we were cheap and would try to avoid using A/C here in Michigan unless it got realy unbearable and then we would only turn it on for an hour while the place cooled down adn then we’d kick it back off until it got uncomfortable again. With the pugs, particularly Beans, we use the air conditioning more often to keep her comfortable. Fans can help a little bit too but many dogs won’t lay directly in front of a fan and fans aren’t nearly as successful at truly lowering the inside temperature so AC is better if possible.
2. Avoid spending long amounts of time outside when it’s hot. We try to avoid going outside during the peak heat hours (roughly noon to 3 or so). To get in play time (or walks) we go early in the morning or late at night when it’s cooler.
3. Keep plenty of fresh water available at all times.
4. Doggy popsicles – similar to how we enjoy ice cream or popsicles when we’re hot, dogs like them as well. Some dogs will even enjoy plain water ice cubes to lick or play with. My dogs are pickier so we make Homemade Dog Ice Pops with healthy ingredients that help with their digestion, too.
5. Cooling dog mat. There are a handful of companies that make mats that can be frozen or have water added to give your pup a cold place to lay. On my other blog, Emily Reviews, I reviewed the Cool Pet Pad which doesn’t have any ‘prep’ required which is nice.
6. Put on a cold bandana or shirt. I just use bandanas or dog t-shirts that we already own and soak them in cold water to get them cold and put them on the pugs. If the material loses its cold feeling, just re-soak.
7. iCool scarf cooling dog collars. I got these for review on Emily Reviews as well. They are more convenient than soaking a regular shirt or bandana because they stay cold for hours.
8. Frozen water bottles. Fill old water bottles or 2 liter soda bottles with water and freeze. I had a friend tell me that her dogs love playing with and laying on them. I tried making some for my pugs and they were scared of them but it’s worth a try.
9. Baby pool swimming. If your dog enjoys playing in water, you can buy the blue baby pools at many stores for under $10. They are a fun, fairly inexpensive way for dogs to cool off if they enjoy water.
10. Grooming. If your dog is a longer haired breed that requires grooming, be sure to keep up with their grooming during warmer months to help them keep cool.
How do you help your dogs stay cool in the summer?