How to Protect Your Pets in the Heat

A white fluffy dog running on grass to protect feet from hot pavement.

How to Protect Your Pets in the Heat

With higher-than-normal temperatures becoming more common, it’s essential to take extra precautions to protect your pets from the heat. In this article, we will discuss some ways to keep your loved ones comfortable and safe.


  1. Limit Outdoor Time: When the weather is scorching hot, it’s best to keep your pets indoors as much as possible, especially during the hottest parts of the day. Instead, plan outings or walks for during the cooler morning or evening hours.  If you do take your pet out be prepared with some water and make sure they stay hydrated.  It is also important to be mindful of how quickly the pavement can heat up and be dangerous for them to walk on.
  2. Bathroom Breaks: While it’s essential to minimize outdoor exposure, your pet still needs bathroom breaks. Supervise your pets while they are out and try to keep the outside time to just a quick break.  Try to make sure they have access to shade or grassy surfaces.
  3. Create a Cool Environment: Ensure your home is a cool and comfortable sanctuary for your pets. Keep the indoor temperature regulated and consider using fans or air conditioning to maintain a comfortable atmosphere.
  4. Provide Ample Water: Hydration is key! Make sure your pets always have access to fresh and cool water. You can add ice cubes to their water bowl to help keep it chilled or consider giving your pet some frozen treats to cool down.


Recognize Heat Stroke Symptoms: 

It’s vital to know the signs of heat stroke in pets. The following are common symptoms:

  • Brick red gums and tongue
  • High body temperature (over 104°F or 40°C)
  • Rapid or heavy panting and breathing
  • Lethargy or exhaustion
  • Lack of coordination and stumbling
  • Collapse or loss of consciousness


What to Do If You Suspect Heat Stroke: 

If you suspect your pet is suffering from heat stroke, take immediate action:

  • Move your pet to a cooler area.
  • Offer cool (not cold) water to drink.
  • Dampen a towel with cool water and place it on your pet’s body.
  • Place your pet near a fan.
  • Contact your veterinarian immediately for further guidance and assistance.  Seek emergency care right away if necessary. 

What Not to Do: 

Avoid submerging your pet in cold water or placing ice directly on their skin. This sudden extreme change in temperature can lead to shock or other complications.

Remember, our pets rely on us to keep them safe and healthy, especially during extreme weather conditions. By following these tips and being attentive to any symptoms of heat stress you can ensure a happy and comfortable summer for your companions.  From Veterinary Dental Specialists of WI, stay cool and have a great summer!


Photo by Joe Caione from Unsplash