Beat The Heat

Summer is filled with fun and excitement, but it can also be quite hot and pose potential dangers to us and our pets. There are a few things to consider when planning summer activities with your pets.  

 

  1. The Importance of Water
    1. Water is essential for all mammals.
    2. Dogs and cats are comprised of approximately 60-80% water. If a dog were to lose 10% of it’s water weight, serious health problems could result.
    3. Water requirements can triple the maintenance amount when stressed (heat, activities, etc.)
      1. Example: 30lb dog would drink 36 ounces as a Daily Maintenance requirement. If the same dog were stressed by heat/activity/etc., their requirement would be 109 ounces.
    4. Water should always be available.
      1. Provide a consistent location for the water source and if you have a multiple level household, provide a water source on each floor.
    5. When traveling, make sure to stop regularly to offer your pet water. Bring water from your house and a travel container to offer the water in.
    6. Make sure to be know and check for signs of dehydration in your dog especially in the summer.
  2. Heat Safety
    1. Traveling
      1. Never leave your dog in a car.
        1. In 10 minutes, the car temperature will rise 19 degrees
        2. In 30 minutes, the care temperature will rise 34 degrees
        3. On a 70 degree day, your car can reach temperatures of 120 degrees very quickly!
      2. Leaving your windows cracked is not enough.
      3. Parking in the shade will not keep the car cool enough to help either.
      4. In a matter of minutes your dog could be overcome by heat stroke
    2. Attending Events
      1. Blacktop heats up very fast.
        1. On a 77 degree day, the asphalt temperature is 125 degrees.
          1. At these temperatures, the dogs pads will be severely damaged in 60 seconds.
        2. On a 87 degree day, the asphalt temperature is 143 degrees.
      2. Take precautions when walking your dog on roads, parking lots, or sidewalks for long periods of time.
      3. Try to keep your dog off hot pavement in the heat of the day.
      4. Encourage your dog to walk and play on grass.
      5. Beach – sand is very similar to blacktop – make sure to protect your dogs feet!
      6. Know the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke in dogs!
  3. Enrichment in the Summer
    1. Indoor activities
      1. Play nose games with your dog
      2. Work on some obedience training
      3. Alternate their toys (3-4 toys at a time out to play with)
      4. Make a simple DIY Puzzle toy
        1. Muffin tin, some tennis balls, and treats.
      5. Arrange a playdate for your dog
    2. Outdoor activities
      1. Water activities
        1. Bath time – bathe your dog outside
        2. Sprinklers and Kiddie pools offer enrichment and heat relief
        3. Swimming pool
          1. Make sure your dog can get in and out easily.
          2. Hose them off afterwards to get the chemicals off of them.
          3. Not all dogs know how to swim, so keep a very close eye on them.
            1. Utilize life vests or floats made for dogs.
      2. Beach
        1. Keep a close eye on your dog at all times
        2. Swimming is a very physically and challenging activity for some dogs and they can easily overexert themselves.
        3. Salt water can dehydrate them fast.
        4. Sand can burn their pads – protect their feet!
        5. If they have a light coat, make sure to put sunscreen on them.
      3. Build a digging box for your dog
        1. Some dogs love to dig – give them their own sand box.
      4. Tug of war
        1. This is a great way to mentally and physically challenge your dog for a short duration but maximum benefit.
      5. Walks
        1. Change up your route – allow them to smell new areas.
        2. Make sure to go before the temperature rises in the morning and after the sun goes down at night.
        3. If you go out to walk when it is dark, make sure to wear reflective collars, leashes, or vests.
    3. Enrichment through Diet
      1. Broth and/or Bone Broth
        1. Frozen or room temperature – mix with water 50:50
        2. Freeze into ice cubes
        3. Provide an additional water bowl with room temperature broth in it and/or mix it with their dry food at meal times.
      2. Frozen Treats
        1. Frozen Blueberries or peas
        2. Utilize your Kong Classic toy to freeze wet food or water/broth mixture
        3. See the recipe attached to the blog for Strawberry Banana Popsicles  for your dog
      3. Ice cubes in water bowl
        1. Some dogs prefer cold water
      4. Wet Food
        1. Add some wet food onto their dry kibble to increase the moisture content in their diet.
        2. Wet food is 70-80% moisture compared to dry kibble which is around 10% moisture.  

We hope this information is helpful for you and your pets to have a safe, fun filled Summer together.  

 

Recipe

STRAWBERRY BANANA POPSICLES

Ingredients:

1 cup plain Yogurt, divided

1 pound Strawberries, divided

1 Banana

4 Rawhide Sticks

 

Directions:

First Layer

1/2 pound Strawberries, chopped

1/2 cup plain Yogurt

Add strawberries and yogurt to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth

 

Second Layer

1 Banana, chopped

1/2 cup plain Yogurt

Add banana and yogurt to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth

 

Third Layer

1/2 pound  Strawberries, chopped

Add strawberries to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth

 

Directions

  1. Pour an inch or so of your first layer mixture into the bottom of each cup.
  2. Allow to freeze for 30 minutes, and insert your rawhide stick.
  3. Repeat pouring the layers, allowing them to set 30 minutes in between, until they are all used.
  4. Freeze for 8 hours to allow them to fully set.
  5. Run warm water around

 

Recipe Source: https://doggydessertchef.com/2012/05/02/strawberry-banana-popsicles/

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