Tips for keeping your dog cool during the summer heat

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STAFFORD, TX – It is hot as hell these days! Yes, the dog days of summer are definitely here and despite the name they can be dangerous for your pooch.

Here are a few tips from the experts at Stafford Oaks Veterinary Hospital to help get your pet through the summer. Veterinarian Dr. Heather Puksta. says, “If you’re going to take your dog for a walk or a run, do it in the morning. In the evening time, even though it’s cooler, that pavement is still going to be really hot. So one of the heat related injuries that we see are dogs that burn their pads off.”

Ouch. The doc also suggests you limit their time in the heat to ‘5 to 10 minutes outside is probably the maximum for most dogs.’

Surprisingly, having access to water isn’t a perfect fix. Dr. Puksta says, “Swimming in a pond is great until they get out of the pond. If there’s no breeze – like how it is in Houston right now – then they’re just going continue to be hot and it’s actually going to make them hotter.”

The heat index these days isn’t good for any dog (or person) but it can really take a toll on some breeds. Dogs highest at risk for heat related injuries are dogs that are short-nosed liked English bulldogs, mastiffs and pugs.

“The other big group that we see a lot of issues in are dogs that are really hairy: husky type breeds and dogs that are overweight and dogs that are older.”

Puksta says a few of the warning signs to watch for include: excessive panting, bright red gums, vomiting, and lethargy. If your pup experiences these symptoms call your vet ASAP.

One sure fire way to avoid all this, just stay inside for another month or so.