How to keep cats, dogs and other pets cool during the heat of the summer

Warm weather has got many of us asking how we can keep our pets cool during the summer months. There is a danger that pets can easily overheat, however, as pet owners, there is a lot we can do to ensure our furry friends don’t get too hot.

We’ve answered some of our most common customer questions about keeping pets cool during the summer heat below.

1. Paw protection for dogs and pets

Pets’ paws can burn easily during the summer heat due to pavement temperatures. If you’re keen to take your dog out for a walk, go for a stroll early in the morning or later in the evening when the pavement is cooler. This will help to prevent burning paws and minimise the risk of sunburn and dehydration in dogs during warmer weather.

2. How to keep dogs cool during summer

Keep your dog cool by encouraging them to go in the shade on hot days. Placing a paddling pool in the shade is another way to keep your dog cool. If your dog isn’t playing ball, an alternative is to wet their paws and faces, as a lot of internal heats comes from their paws. If you’re still worried your dog is too hot, keep your dog indoors and ensure they have fresh, clean water. Strict rules by the RSPCA and other regulatory bodies state you must not leave your pet in a car during warm weather.

3. How to keep cats cool during summer

It can be more challenging to try and keep cats out of the sun due to their love of exploring, but you should try to keep your cat in the shade where possible. If this a little tricky, let your cat play outside early in the morning or late in the evening when the air and pavement is cooler. If possible, keep your cat indoors in a well-ventilated cool room with fresh water. If your cat likes to be outside, take a bowl of fresh, cool water to your cat and keep it in a shaded spot. A top tip by the PDSAis to hang up a bedsheet or use cardboard to create shade. Or a tip from the top, you can even freeze your cat’s favourite treat, such as our Lick-e-Lix sachets to give them a frozen treat when you might be enjoying your ice-cream!


4. Sun cream for dogs, cats and pets

If you notice any red patches of skin or hair loss on your cat, dog or pets, they may have sunburn. Sunburn in cats and dogs is most common on the bridge of the nose, ears and skin surrounding the lips. Sunburn is also common in pets with lighter coloured skin or a thinner coat. It’s important to ensure the sun cream used is designed specifically for pets. You should take your pet to the vet if you are concerned.

5. Heatstroke in dogs and cats

Symptoms of heatstroke in dogs, outlined by Battersea, include heavy panting, glazed eyes or vomiting and diarrhoea. You must cool your dog down with water, wet towels and call your vet immediately. You should keep an eye on big dogs and those with a squashed face or snout, as they are more susceptible to feeling the heat than most. Cats can experience similar symptoms, but can be a little more subtle, such as dribbling and panting. Keep your cat cool with water and contact your vet. Don’t use ice-cold water to cool your pet, as this may send them into shock.

6. Grooming your pet during the summer months

A simple and easy way to keep your cat, dog or other furry pets cool in the summer heat is to ensure they are well groomed. You can do this by combing their coat and removing any loose hair to keep your pet cool. Not only does this reduce heatstroke in the fluffiest of pets, but helps to keep their coat healthy.

You can, of course, keep up to speed on our other top tips to prioritise your pet’s health and wellbeing by exploring our news and events.


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