Tips To Keep Your Pets Cool This Summer
When the temperature starts to climb, summer can be an especially dangerous time for pets. Pets are more susceptible to heat than humans, as many cannot perspire and cool themselves the same as us humans do, so it’s vital we pay extra attention to our pets, so we can keep them both happy and healthy as the summer (hopefully!) arrives.
Signs to look out for if your pet is struggling with heat:
Below is a list of common signs displayed by a variety of animals when they are too hot, or are struggling to regulate their temperature:
- Panting/sitting with an open mouth
- Shortness of breathe
- Drinking more than normal
- Signs of dehydration
- Increased heart rate
- Elevated temperature
- Vomiting (in extreme cases)
- Bright pink or dark red gums and tongue
- Excessive drooling
Tips to help keep your dogs & cats cool:
We have found that two of the most effective and popular ways to help cool your dog down during hot periods of weather is with cool mats, and wet cool towels. Both methods provide a soothing and cooling feeling for your pooch and are easy to use, simple to clean and can be taken with you anywhere you go.
Cool mats are a large pad most commonly filled with gel or water (depending on the brand) and come in a variety of sizes. They are made of durable materials and are all designed to lower your dog’s overall body temperature, keeping them comfortable. Cool mats can be cleaned with a pet safe disinfectant spray or wipes after each use to keep them sanitary for the next time they are required.
Working in a similar way, cool towels are also a great option to provide your dog with some welcome relief from the heat. They work by soaking them in cold water and placing on your dog to provide a cooling sensation which then lowers their body temperature. Some dogs may prefer this more than others but through repetitive use and positive reinforcement they can be encouraged to appreciate the benefits provided by the towel. A great advantage of a cool towel is that they can almost always be cleaned easily in the washing machine in order to keep up good hygiene standards and prevent the growth or spread of bacteria.
Another great way to help cool your furry friends down is by taking them swimming, the sea, rivers and even dedicated swimming pools just for pets are just a few ideas. Not only does this keep them from getting too hot but also provides them with a chance to get a good amount of exercise in order to maintain a healthy body weight, build muscle and burn off any excess energy. To make sure your dog doesn’t get dehydrated from all the exercise, why not buy a handy water bottle dispenser to take with you to provide them with clean fresh water? We have these available in store or online, take a look:
Cats can also suffer from over-heating during hot periods, and some will appreciate cool mats just as dogs do when seeking an area to cool down in. In addition to this a suitable way to provide both cats and dogs with an opportunity to lower their body temperature is to ensure they have beds in shaded areas, both inside and outside, to encourage them to lie down out of direct sunlight. This will not only help keep their core temperature down, but also prevent them from burning more sensitive parts of their skin such as their nose, ears and paws.
Furthermore, providing your cat or dog with a room that has better air circulation either through open windows or a fan will give them a good spot to relax and cool down in. When using a fan around animals ensure they cannot harm themselves on it and set it to a lower setting, or point upwards to prevent irritation on their fur as this can cause stress and discomfort for some.
Tips to help keep your reptiles cool:
While most reptiles generally enjoy warmer ambient temperatures, they can still reach a point where the heat becomes too much. To appropriately combat this issue you can provide them with a bowl of fresh, colder water, to give them somewhere to soak off the excess heat. Alongside this, misting them and their enclosure, where suitable, with cooler water can provide a break from the heat.
In some cases it may be beneficial to lower the temperature on their heating system, although you should make sure to monitor the basking and cool end spots to ensure they still reach the correct temperatures for the species you are keeping.
Tips to help keep your birds cool:
When keeping birds it is important to watch their temperature as they can over heat very quickly. The best way to cool a feathery friend down is to offer them a bath in cooler water, some individuals enjoy running water too (e.g. bathing under a tap). Additionally, you can mist your pet bird with cool water in a spray bottle to provide them with the chance to cool down. Another option is to open a nearby window in order to provide a breeze and fresh air, though make sure your bird is kept secure first and keep an eye out to make sure the breeze is not too chilly for them!