Keep Your Pet Comfortable During these Dog Days of Summer
People perspire when their body temperature rises in order to maintain a normal body temperature. The sweat that is produced as we perspire evaporates, and this process is designed to cool the body. However, excessive sweating can lead heat exhaustion, which can cause some very serious medical problems. Unlike us, our pets do not perspire but pant in order to cool themselves when hot, and are therefore more susceptible to heat exhaustion. Moreover, a pet when it is hot cannot turn on the air conditioning, go for a swim, or change into cooler clothing.
A cool shady area out of direct sunlight is a must for any dog that is tied outside. Additionally, cold, fresh, and clean water must be handy and in a container that an excited dog will not be able to overturn. A doghouse in the sun does not count as a shady area. The sun beating down on a doghouse can make the inside temperature of that doghouse unbearable. Remember the New York State Doghouse Law stipulates that, "This shelter must be appropriate to the dog's breed, physical condition, and the climate. The shelter must have a waterproof roof, be structurally sound, and be insulated appropriate to the particular climate and weather conditions." Remember climate and weather conditions are not referring just to our cold winter weather.
Dogs and cats, particularly those with light colored coats and skin, are susceptible to the damage that sun's ultraviolet rays can cause, particularly around the face and ears. Unlike our pets we can put on sunscreen and we have the power of reason to cover our skin against sun exposure. What choice does a dog tied in the sun have?
During these hot summer months please do not take your pet for a ride and leave him or her in a parked car. The windows of your automobile and the hot summer sun are a dangerous combination that oppressively heats up the interior of a parked car. Even with the windows down the temperature inside parked car can easily reach well over 100 degrees in a matter of a few short minutes. When you are out and about, if you see a dog left in a parked car this summer, call the local police and report it.
The summer is an enjoyable time of the year. Let's make it
enjoyable for out pets too!