With the higher than normal temperatures we have seen in Saskatchewan over the past month, it has become a challenge to enjoy the summer with our pets, and also keep them safe and comfortable. Fortunately, with a little planning and effort, you can still enjoy much of what summer has to offer and include your pet.
Here are some tips on how to keep your pet cool this summer!
Provide lots of water
Just like humans, one of the most important tips is to provide your pet with lots of water to keep them hydrated. Always have fresh bowls of cold water around the house that are easily accessible to your furry friends. Your cat might enjoy a fountain bowl or a bowl with a toy in it to bat around too. Popping an ice cube or two in the bowl now and then will help keep it cool too!
A Cool Place to Be
Help your pet be comfortable when you’re at the office by finding a cool spot in the house for them to spend the day. Often this can be a lower level such as the basement or an area that does not get any direct sunlight. But, be sure that if it is an area that your pet is not normally in alone, that you ensure they can’t access any toxins or other hazards. You might also want to close blinds and curtains to keep the space as cool as possible.
Make a frozen treat bowl
A frozen treat bowl is an awesome way to keep your pets both entertained and cool – and they’re so easy to make. Simply freeze some kibble or their favourite treats in a bowl of frozen water and then stand back and watch as they lick their way to a cool and comfortable day! For variety, you can add some beef or chicken stock as well before freezing. They’ll love it!
Let a Fan Cheer Them On
If you don’t have air-conditioning, consider providing a fan in the area that your pet will spend the day to help keep fresh air circulating in the room, which can make a huge difference in keeping them comfortable. They’re a great way for your pet to keep cool and you might even consider attaching a pet-friendly misting system to provide even more relief.
Freeze that Kong
Another cool treat idea is to line the inside of a Kong with a special treat such as peanut butter and tossing it in the freezer. When ready, it will provide your dog with some chillin’ fun times as she licks away at the frozen treat!
Keep your dog at a healthy weight
Besides treats and fans, your dog’s physical condition can be a factor in how they handle the heat. Overweight dogs can have a harder time keeping cool in warm weather and are at greater risk of overheating. Consult with your veterinarian about maintaining your pet’s ideal body condition and overall health.
Take care of your dog’s coat
Grooming your pet should be part of your regular routine, but it can also be critical to your pet’s ability to stay cool. Your dog’s coat doesn’t just keep them warm in the winter but can also keep them cooler in the summer – not to mention protecting them from sunburn. Regular and thorough brushing allows proper airflow for their skin and helps prevents mats, which are not only painful, but also trap heat and moisture which can result in skin infections.
However, it is not usually a good idea to simply shave down your dog’s fur. While some dogs may benefit from a shave, many breeds do not require this, especially dogs with double coats. As always, consult with your veterinarian regarding the proper grooming needs of your particular pet.
Be cool and enjoy the summer – and remember, always supervise your pet when giving them toys and edible treats and NEVER leave them alone in a vehicle!