Keeping Pets Safe from Summer Heat

With the heat and humidity high this summer, it’s important to keep our pets safe!

Many dogs and cats spend significant time outdoors during the summer months, but taking breaks to bring them inside as much as possible on hot days can help keep them healthy and happy. Here are a few more tips to keep in mind as we move through the summer months with our furry friends:

  • Do not leave your vehicle unattended with your pet inside, and never to keep your pet locked inside a hot vehicle.
  • When outside with your dog, remember that asphalt and concrete surfaces can be extremely hot in the sunlight. Walk your dog in the early morning or later evening hours, keeping their paws on a grass or cooler surface as much as possible.
  • Make sure you have water available, especially if your pet is outside for a significant length of time. Make sure they have areas of shade and plenty of fresh water available. When it’s really hot, add ice cubes to the water bowl. Cats can also overheat on those hot days, and they need water and access to shaded areas or an enclosed structure.
  • Know the warning signs of heat-related symptoms: excessive panting or salivating, vomiting, diarrhea and disorientation. If you notice any of these symptoms, get your pet into a cooler environment and call your vet. Many dogs love to play in water, and having them run through a sprinkler or a safe dip in a small pool can instantly cool them off.
  • Check and treat your pets for ticks. There are a number of diseases dogs and cats can get from ticks, and humans can also have serious health consequences. Run your fingers through your pets’ fur with gentle pressure to feel for any small bumps, especially in and around the ears. The most notorious tick-borne disorder is Lyme disease, which can be a serious bacterial infection. Dogs, cats and humans can all contract Lyme disease, although it is uncommon in cats.
  • On those very hot days, limit walking and fetching activities.

With good preparation, you and your pet can make the most of summer fun! Read more about summer heat protection here.