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The surviving pet: Summer. Heat. Pet Awareness
Summer Heat Wave Fatal to Dogs
June days are rainy and the nights are stuffy and sweltering. For a household that is not ready to turn on the a/c units and have pets in the house, these pets especially the dog(s) become so restless. Your pet dog’s restlessness will keep you up a few times overnight, trust me.
Dogs pant in humid late nights. If your dog has his bed also in your bedroom, keep a fresh cold water dish re-filled each night inside the room or along the hall if you keep your bedroom door ajar. Keep a sliding window wide open for some cool breeze (if any).
My dog gets grooming as soon as his fur thickens and gets more grooming often during hot months. But why does he still pant? He is feeling too hot and uncomfortable just as we are. ≈♥≈
Keep Your Dog Indoors on Hot Days
Know what to do when you go off to work, the dog is alone, and it is humid even indoors. When you have to go out for more than an hour errand, leave your dog behind at home. Even for short minutes with your dog out in the sun on a temperature above normal, it will be too stressful and dehydrating for your dog.
Good Dog, Stay: Extreme heat is very uncomfortable and deadly for our pets. It is helpful to our pets to leave them at home. Don't take them out for even a walk under hot conditions.
Welcome the Wind: Leave some windows narrowly opened for gentle winds to come in.
Pets Stay Hydrated: Fill-up at least 2 large bowls of sufficient cold water. Leave a dish of small quantity dry food too, but more water to drink is important. If you are at home, re-fill with fresh water as many times a day.
In the Shadow: A shady area at home is always cooler. Dogs even want to lie on bathroom floors (just keep the garbage bin out of reach). Keep curtains down where the sun would normally hit certain areas inside the house.
Alone Playtime: Keep toys reachable and within your dogs view. (My dog’s toys are inside a low basket so he can easily grab them.) Aside from constant naps many times a day, your dog will always find time to keep himself occupied. Give him his favourite chewable item to have fun on his own. (My dog is good with natural Beefhide knotted bone or sticks. Note: Rawhide might not be suitable for your dog.
Keeping Cool: In late breezy afternoons, it is time to take your dog out in your backyard while you are watering your garden. They love the coolness of the grass and would lay there for hours listening to the chirping birds or gets up to tease a squirrel's visit.
Play and give your dog a cool shower from your garden hose; your dog would love it. ≈♥≈
Car Rides and it is Hot as Hell
At any time of day the temperature is up, it is wise to keep your dogs at home, not out for a walk nor in the car with you.
Be Cautious for Your Pet: Be wary taking your dog out with you and leave your dog inside your car on very hot days. Concerned citizens who might spot them alone panting inside the car could get you in serious trouble. Dogs are commonly left inside their owner’s vehicles in a supermarket or mall parking lots. These are two busy places and do not guarantee that you will be back to your car in a hurry even if you wanted to because you know your dear pet is in the car waiting. And why do you think dogs like to stick their heads out of the car window? http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/07/21/heat-wave-animals_n_905399.html
Animal Distress: Dogs can suffer in hot weather conditions. They are not humans and are more vulnerable to danger caused by neglect especially locked inside unattended vehicles. They could get dehydrated, suffocated or succumb to a fatal heatstroke. It is dangerous for pets and is animal cruelty, punishable by law. ≈♥≈
If it is too hot, it is TOO HOT!
How hot can cars get? How unsafe is it for your dog? Semi-rolled down windows and the car parked out under the sun does not actually help your dog. Your budgeted time to be away from your car can never guarantee that you could be back very soon. You have to ask yourself, "What if you can't get back on time and your dog is in your car?"
Avoiding Trail Hikes and Beaches on Hot Summer Days
If Dogs Can Talk: If your dog can speak to you, he’d probably say, “I don’t want to go out hiking or the beach today. It is dreadfully hot!”
Pack Some Water: Always bring along enough cold water for you and your dog.
Sunny Discomfort: Beaches are a "no no" for dogs during a too hot and glaring summer. Imagine yourself in your most light and airy clothing compared to your dog. The dog of course is covered with more hair or fur and they will be experiencing physical discomfort while you are having fun. Securing your dog under a tree for shade is not enough. The heat wave would make them suffer. The sun’s glare on the ground and around them would be hurtful to their eyes as well.
A Perfect Day: The best time to take your dog(s) out, with your love for outdoor trail hikes, beach-combing, or a park play is during wispy warm and cool days. ≈♥≈
When Not to Take Your Dog Out at (Dog) Festivals
Toronto celebrates Woofstock http://www.woofstock.ca/, a yearly wacky and fun outdoor festival for dogs. I have lived very close to the area before where Woofstock holds its events each year. There are events that I do not take my dog out just because it is his big day. If the day of the fest is too hot, it is too hot for him to handle, I know. I will be enjoying the booths, tons of give-aways, dog pageant and many cute looking dogs dressed up in costumes and silly outfits, but I am pretty sure my dog will not be enjoying as much as I do. I would wait for the heat wave to settle down close to the evening activities. If not, he stays home and I stay home with him. Both of us will be missing all the fun, but he will be stressed-free staying indoors. It would avoid my dog's paws getting burned from the hot pavement as well. Anyways, the dog fest comes around every year. Winter Woofstock is another event.
Some dog owners go out to the fest without their dog(s). Dogs become burdened by all the “leg traffic” and its bustling on the streets. You can tell by noticing their tails are pointed down instead of wagging. Some are left at the dogcare "pet-sitting" area provided for them on the street. The dogs there are happier to mingle and play with their kind, but not all. Some cry out watching their masters walk away to do a little shopping without them. It is nice to show off your dog but I don’t think your dog even knows that. So, you may leave your dog(s) at home during festivals if it will be too exhausting for them.
There was a year that I took my dog out to engage in at the Woofstock and meet new four-legged friends. My dog rejected free liver and chicken treats given to him under the heat, in fact, these are his two favourite treats. He did not drink from sidewalk bowls that restaurants and pubs had thoughtfully prepared outside, though I always carry his own water bottle. The busy and crowded walks on Front Street, Toronto, were stressing him out. I admit there were times that I and my daughters have to take turns carrying him and he is a heavy 24 lb. He is also scared of dogs larger than his size and could be mean to the little ones. I was more conscious and cautious of people and small children reaching out to pet him, and constantly advise them, “Don't pet him; my dog can be grumpy.” Dogs sweat through their noses, and some drool too much. Going home down the lanes from the fest made him so happy, pulling ahead of us, running towards the doors. His tail was wagging and he felt very eager to get home. I let him rest for a bit and he did have a good nap, then, a cool shower followed to give him a lovely night. ≈♥≈