How to keep your pet cool in the dog days of summer

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Make sure to keep plenty of cold water available for your pet to drink and try to limit outdoor activity to times when the sun isn’t at its peak.

By Sandra Jenkins, Dog Gone Crazy

As the temperatures and humidity levels in Northeast Ohio continue their climb, imagine having to navigate the heat of summer while wearing a fur coat. Ugh. 

Dogs and cats don’t have the luxury of removing their “coat” to cool off, and exposure to excessive heat can pose risks like sunburn, heat stroke, exhaustion, dehydration and even death.

Panting is one way your pet cools itself off naturally, and a little sweating through its paws can help to take the edge off, but in extreme heat it’s important to provide your pet with a safe environment in which to stay cool and comfortable.

Back to the Basics
Easy and economical ways to help your dog or cat beat the summer heat include regular brushing to remove extra hair, using a cool, wet cloth to pat them down, and applying pet-safe sunscreen to exposed skin.

If you have air conditioning, make sure it’s set at a safe level and keep it running even if you leave for work. And never leave your pet in a car without the air conditioning running. Cracking the window simply isn’t enough.

Make sure to keep plenty of cold water available for your pet to drink and try to limit outdoor activity to times when the sun isn’t at its peak.

If your pet enjoys the water, try filling a small pool so it can wade and splash around to keep cool, or, if that’s not an option, try wetting your pet’s feet and misting water onto its face.

Cool Gadgets
If you’re in the mood to splurge, there are a number of different pet cooling mats available to absorb heat and reduce body temperature—a perfect option for senior dogs or cats.

Cooling jackets are also available. These pop out of the fridge and onto your pet to help it beat the heat in comfort.

Dog Gone Crazy, A Canine & Feline FUNhouse, is located at 4070 Foskett Road, in Medina. The phone number is 330-273-1777. Hours are Monday-Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Stop in anytime during business hours for a tour. Visit DogGoneCrazyKennels.com for more information.