Thursday, July 2, 2009

Tips for Your Dogs in Hot Weather

After two weeks of near 100 degree plus temperatures, it seems as if we’re already into the warmest part of our summer. Because it feels like Dallas is closer to the sun than any other U.S. city, it's important to consider the stress and strain that warm weather can put on our furry friends who love and use the Katy Trail as much as we do. Here are a few tips for you to keep in mind:

  • The right time of day for a walk, run or playtime for you pet is in the cool of the early morning or late evening, but never after a meal or when the weather is humid.

  • Don't let your dog stand on the running trail, which is hotter than the concrete trail. His or her body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn.

  • Heat exhaustion is often caused by over-exercising or running with a dog during hot weather. Both heatstroke and heat exhaustion can result in brain damage, heart failure or even death in a short period of time. Short muzzled and thick-coated breeds and mixes are particularly vulnerable. Always bring cool water along. To cool off an overheated dog, offer him or her plenty of water, then wet the dog's body and paws with cool water and then fan.

When it’s warm, we are able to sweat and cool ourselves; but our furry friends can only sweat around their paws. In order to cool themselves down, dogs pant. Although this is an effective way for animals to cool themselves, its success rate is limited in confined areas or humid weather. Please pay close attention to your pets at this time of year.

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