Summers can be really exhausting and irritating for dogs. Especially the summers in India. Can you imagine what it would feel like walking around in a fur coat in the scorching heat? That must feel like hell! Most dogs change their habits to adapt to different temperatures. But as a dog parent, here are some tips you can use to ensure that your furry friend is safe and healthy in the hot summers.
Keep Your Dog Cool
While dogs love to sunbathe, direct sunlight in the summer can overheat them and lead to heatstroke. Keep your dog in shade as much as possible.
During summers, it is advisable to walk your dog early in the morning and late in the evening. And if your dog really needs to go anytime in between, make sure it’s not in direct sunlight and the pavement is not very hot. If that too can’t be avoided, consider wearing shoes as heating of paws can be harmful.
After a walk or playtime, you can use a wet towel for your dog to lie on and cool down. You can also use a wet cloth to wipe your dog whenever you feel like.
Grooming Your Pooch
Many dog owners think that shaving off dog’s fur will keep your dog cool. But that’s not true. Shaving off the coat can actually be more harmful. Furs actually helps in protecting their skin from overheating and sunburns. Trimming long fur is advisable.
Another important thing to remember is, do not skip brushing! Regardless of the season, mats and tangles are always a trouble. Besides, being a great bonding exercise, Brushing the coat of your dog strips out loose hair so air can circulate against his skin. Regular and thorough brushing also prevents mats, which are not only painful but also trap heat and moisture and can result in skin infections. You Check these products for brushing your dog.
During Summers, some dogs are also prone to hotspots. To contain such a situation from arising, it is recommended to opt for shampoos with chlorhexidine, For natural ingredients, you can opt for aloe vera based formulations which is a known anti-bacterial and a moisturizer and leaves the coat healthy.
Regular Checks for Fleas and Ticks
Hot weather is an invitation for fleas and ticks. So, don’t forget to check through your dog’s skin and fur daily and make sure you change their beddings from time to time. Don’t miss out on prominent spots like neck, elbows, behind the ears, paws, base of the tail.
If your pooch is prone to fleas and ticks, consider using Forfurs Natural Anti Tick and Flea Shampoo. This shampoo contains an anti-bacterial formula made of lemongrass, neem and citronella oil which helps repel ticks and fleas while soothing your dog’s irritated skin.
Never Leave Your Dog in a Parked Car
On a hot summer day, the heat in a parked car is more severe than in open areas even if the car is parked in shade. Even if you leave the windows open, it does not help. Animals who are left in parked cars can lead to intense heat stroke.
If you see any animal left alone in a car during the summers, alert the department manager of the place and call the owner ASAP. If the owner is not around, call the police and rescue the animal.
Not all, but most dogs love swimming. And swimming is definitely an awesome activity to do in the summer for both dogs and dog owners. It is great exercise and it also hydrates the dog's coat and skin. Although, it's important to rinse your dog with clean water, post swimming. Most dogs don't need it but gentle cleaning of the ears with a soft cotton ball is also recommended to keep the ears dry and avoid infections. This is important for dogs with long and hanging ear flaps like cocker spaniel, golden retriever, Labrador, beagle and basset hound. If ear problems arise, visit your veterinarian immediately.
Stay Indoors As Much As Possible
In Summers, it is best to keep your dog indoors as much as possible. It’s undeniable that dogs prefer to go outside and play in open surroundings more than staying indoors but, staying indoors doesn’t have to be boring. Introduce new interactive games to your dog like hide and seek or tug of war, give him new toys, play fetch in different corners of your house.
Add Frozen Foods to Your Dog’s Summer Diet
Summertime means less physical activity and, as a result, decreased food consumption. So, if your dog decides to eat less, that's perfectly natural. There are, however, a variety of foods that dog owners can easily prepare at home to keep their dogs cool.
Frozen fruit treats make a great option for a summer diet. You can use fruits like watermelon, muskmelon, apples, bananas and oranges. Fruits should be chopped into small pieces and frozen. Don’t forget to remove all seeds, rinds and peels before feeding your dog.
You can also feed your doggo frozen unsweetened yoghurt individually or mix it together with the fruits. Buttermilk (chaas) is also an option not to be missed on a summer diet plan.
Another thing to consider is chicken or beef broth. As common as this may seem, it's important to remember that the temperature of these foods matter too. Many people live under the impression that food should be hot. But, dogs are different from humans, their bodies and stomachs are very different from ours. They do not need heated up food. Infact, dogs actually prefer room temperature food.
Keep refilling your dog's water bowl time and again with clean, fresh and cool water. Ensure a bowl full of water before you go to bed.
Dogs usually tend to lose their appetite and eat less in the summer. So, make sure to include plenty of fluids in their diet. You can also give them alternatives like buttermilk, electrolyte, and coconut water occasionally.
Look Out For Your Furry Friends on the Streets
We may do the best we can to take care of our pooch. But who’s there to look out for those poor street dogs struggling in the scorching sun?
The least we can do for them is try to build little sheds for them from waste to save them from the heat or at least take them to a shaded area. Also, keeping water to drink for the street dogs around your area would be so helpful.
Have we missed something? How do you take care of your pet in summer?