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The surviving pet: Summer. Heat. Pet Awareness

Updated on February 26, 2015
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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. ≈♥≈


Simba knows how to handle and chew on a knotted bone-shaped 100% Beefhide.
Simba knows how to handle and chew on a knotted bone-shaped 100% Beefhide. | Source
Simba's favourite stuffed toys.
Simba's favourite stuffed toys. | Source
Simba loves the grass!
Simba loves the grass! | Source

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. ≈♥≈

On a high heat day, leave your dog at home. Even with all 4 windows cracked, humid air does not change inside to make your pet feel comfortable especially a vehicle in an non-shaded parking space.
On a high heat day, leave your dog at home. Even with all 4 windows cracked, humid air does not change inside to make your pet feel comfortable especially a vehicle in an non-shaded parking space. | Source
Love and care for your pet by not exposing them to excess heat outdoors.  If you feel hot, the more they do. No wonder, a dog would stick his head out of the car window.
Love and care for your pet by not exposing them to excess heat outdoors. If you feel hot, the more they do. No wonder, a dog would stick his head out of the car window. | Source

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?"


Simba learned to appreciate the water along the Toronto Island beach during a cooler day.
Simba learned to appreciate the water along the Toronto Island beach during a cooler day. | Source
Simba enjoying an afternoon of good weather.  The beach sand wasn't uncomfortable for his paws.
Simba enjoying an afternoon of good weather. The beach sand wasn't uncomfortable for his paws. | Source

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. ≈♥≈

Dress up warm when playing out on cooler days with your pet.
Dress up warm when playing out on cooler days with your pet. | Source
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Summer Woofstock on Front Street, Toronto
Summer Woofstock on Front Street, Toronto | Source

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. ≈♥≈


Dog Rescue

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    • Cat R profile image

      Cat R 4 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      So true! More people need to read this!

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Thank you Cat R. One link in this hub- a recent news of a dog that died inside a car in Toronto. I heard about it from my kids, but I didn't want to read the news to find out details because it will just sadden me with so much pity for the dog. I searched for the news and attached a link instead.

      Thank you for stumbling by! Have a good day!

    • BeyondMax profile image

      BeyondMax 4 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Very thoughtful, awesome! Simba is so adorable, gorgeous boy =)

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hi BeyondMax! Thank you for your admiring words! Take care.

    • Cat R profile image

      Cat R 4 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      It should be common sense, but how many people leave their children in hot cars and think nothing of it!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Simba is adorable. I always hate to see a dog locked in a car on a hot summer day. Even with the windows cracked, it is not a safe place for it. Great hub article.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Hi teaches12345, Simba says "Thank you!".

      Really, it is a sad situation for our four-legged friends during dry, hot days and especially if left in a car. The cats are better off because they stay at home.

      And Cat R is right. It is a matter of "common sense".

      Stay cool, teaches12345!

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

      It is very obvious that you are an informed and loving pet owner. Simba is a beauty and I am certain that he showers you with as much love as you show to him. Cute line up of toys he has! Every year pets are accidentally killed by being left in hot cars. It is also nice that you mentioned the hot pavements or sand for their paws. Up and useful votes and will be pinning this one.

    • coffeegginmyrice profile image
      Author

      Marites Mabugat-Simbajon 4 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

      Summer is approaching and it is high time for dog owners to be watchful about- not to leave pets in the car in hot hot days. Our pets need our loving and all the care we could to keep them safe. Thanks Peggy and have a pleasant day!

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