Dogs in Hot Weather: Ways to Keep Them Cool

Summer in Marinette, WI, brings plenty of sunshine and warm weather, making it the perfect time for outdoor activities with your dog. However, the rise in temperatures can pose significant risks to your pet’s health and comfort. At Town & Country Veterinary Clinic, we understand the importance of keeping your dog cool and safe during the hot months. This blog provides practical advice for pet owners on how to protect their dogs from the heat, ensuring they stay happy and healthy all summer long. If you have concerns or need more information, call us at (715) 735-9511.


Recognizing the Signs of Overheating

Dogs don’t sweat through their skin like humans do; they release heat primarily through their paws and by panting. However, these methods are not always efficient in high temperatures. Knowing the signs of overheating is essential for preventing heatstroke and ensuring your dog’s safety.

  • Excessive Panting and Drooling: While panting is normal, excessive panting and drooling can be early signs of heatstroke.
  • Increased Heart Rate: A rapid heartbeat can indicate your dog is overheating.
  • Lethargy or Weakness: If your dog seems unusually tired or weak, it could be a sign of overheating.
  • Vomiting or Diarrhea: These are more severe symptoms that require immediate attention.

Immediate Steps to Cool Down Your Dog

If you notice any signs of overheating in your dog, it’s crucial to act quickly.

  • Get your dog out of the direct sun and into a cooler environment.
  • Offer your dog cool (not cold) water to drink.
  • Gently apply wet towels to your dog’s body, focusing on the neck, underarms, and groin areas.

Daily Practices to Prevent Overheating

Preventing overheating is key to keeping your dog safe during the hot weather. Here are some daily practices to incorporate:

  • Morning or Evening Walks: Avoid the midday heat by walking your dog in the early morning or late evening.
  • Access to Shade and Fresh Water: Always ensure your dog has access to shade and fresh, cool water when outside.
  • Indoor Play: On extremely hot days, opt for indoor activities to keep your dog active without the risk of overheating.

Creating a Cool Environment at Home

Making a few adjustments at home can greatly increase your dog’s comfort during the summer.

  • Invest in a cooling mat for your dog to lie on.
  • Keep the air moving and the environment cool with fans or air conditioning.
  • Provide your dog with frozen treats to help them cool down from the inside out.

Safe Outdoor Activities in the Heat

While it’s important to keep your dog cool, they still need exercise and stimulation. Choose activities that are safe in hot weather. Swimming is a great way for dogs to cool off and get some exercise. Setting up a sprinkler or playing with a hose can also provide fun and relief from the heat. If you’re taking your dog for a walk, opt for walks in shaded areas where the ground is cooler on your dog’s paws.

Protecting Your Dog’s Paws

The hot ground can damage your dog’s paws. Protecting their paws is important to their comfort. Apply a protective wax to your dog’s paws before walks on warmer days. You may also consider using dog booties for walks on hot pavement. Always test the ground with your hand before letting your dog walk on it. If it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for their paws.

When to Call the Vet

While these tips can help keep your dog cool, it’s important to know when to seek professional help. If your dog shows signs of severe overheating, such as excessive panting that doesn’t stop with rest, collapse, or convulsions, call Town & Country Veterinary Clinic immediately at (715) 735-9511. Early intervention can be lifesaving.

The Importance of Regular Check-ups

Regular veterinary check-ups can help identify any underlying health issues that may increase your dog’s risk of overheating. Our team can also provide personalized advice for keeping your dog cool based on their specific health needs.

Call Town & Country Veterinary Clinic

Keeping your dog cool and comfortable during the hot summer months in Marinette, WI, is essential for their health and happiness. By recognizing the signs of overheating, implementing daily practices to prevent it, and knowing when to seek veterinary care, you can ensure your dog enjoys a safe and happy summer season. If you notice your dog is overheating, call Town & Country Veterinary Clinic at (715) 735-9511.