Pawsh-magazine-how-to-keep-dogs-coolOur pets look to us for shelter and safety, especially when summer arrives complete with a massive heatwave! While our pets have great instincts when it comes to coping with heat, it is very important for owners to do everything they can to keep their environment as comfortable as possible. So here is a list of six simple  ideas to keep cool, even if you don’t have air-conditioning!

1)  No Cars
This is probably the most obvious, but never leave your pet in a stifling car for any period of time on a sweltering day. Even if you crack a window the internal temperature of the car rises extremely fast and can be very harmful to your pet. If you do see an animal locked in a car report the incident immediately to your local animal agency, such as the Humane Society.

2)  Air Conditioning
If you’re lucky enough to have air-conditioning in your house or apartment, leave it on for your pet during the day. Even if its just a window air conditioner in one room, your pet will thank you for an opportunity to cool off.

3) Basement Bliss
There are options for households without air-conditioning too. For instance, keep your pet in the basement during the day. Be sure to provide them with toys, a sleeping area and water to keep them ultra comfy.

4) Hire a Babysitter
If you have no basement and no air-conditioning, it’s not enough to simply keep the blinds closed and the sun out of your house. The high temperatures combined with the high humidity can be torture to a pet left inside all day. So plan ahead for your pet. On really hot days take your pet to a friend’s house who has air-conditioning or a reputable doggie daycare.

5) Hair Cut
Now going bald is a bit extreme, but booking your pet in for a hair cut can really help some breeds stay cool. Keep in mind however that some dogs’ coats act as natural insulators and cooling systems, so only require a good brush to get rid of excess winter coat. Be sure to consult closely with your groomer to make sure you are doing what is best for your particular pup and their furry coat.

6) Water
If you can, take your pet to play in the water. Some cities allow dogs to play pools before they are drained for the evening. If a pool isn’t in sight, head for the lake or play in the sprinkler or padding pool. Or just give your pup a refreshing spray with the garden hose or dip in the bathtub. Water fun is something you and your pet can have together!

Do you have any tricks for keeping cool?

{Photography by Laura L. Benn}