Es ist heis. Fa caldo. Il fait chaud. Whatever way you say it, it’s HOT out! Here in New Hampshire today, the mercury’s in the low 9os. Last week my parents in Illinois reported a temp of 104 at midday–NOT heat index–real temp!– and my brother in Texas forlornly informed me last weekend that “It’s been 100 degrees here for a least a month.”
While these blazing temps may be great for your tan, they are NOT good for our canine companions. My crew has begun dispensing with their business with great alacrity–a quick outing in the morning, a VERY quick midday tour of the yard, and then a bit longer jaunt in the evening after the sun has set. In between time is spent sprawled on the cool time floor or strategically positioned above one of the AC vents.
As most people know, dogs essentially don’t sweat–most of their sweat glands are located around their foot pads and are not terribly helpful in dissipating heat. The only real way a dog has to cool off is panting. Thus is it critically important to be extra vigilant during these warm summer days to make sure our furry friends are kept cool and hydrated. The most important things to remember:
- Make sure that your dog has easy access to fresh, clean, cool water.
- Don’t overdo exercise in the heat–Bug and Beau and I walk early morning or late evening (my brother has resorted to walking his dogs as late as midnight in Texas to avoid the heat)
- Offer your dogs a cool place to take a dip–if you don’t live near water or have a pool, kiddie pools work great!
- DO NOT leave your dog in a parked car!! If you’re running errands, please leave your pet at home. It takes no time at all for temps inside the car to reach deadly heights.
For more hot weather tips, visit the ASPCA website.