Just like humans, it is very important to keep your dog hydrated and cool in the summer heat. Typically, dogs should drink an ounce of water for each pound everyday. However, in these hot summer months, or when dogs spend a lot of time outside, it is recommended to drink more water. But just simply leaving a bowl of water out isn’t the only (or best) solution to dehydration; there are many more safe and extremely effective ways to keep your dog healthy and quenched. Make sure you know the signs of overheating or dehydration and ways to prevent it.
Take water on walks. Remember, every one step for you is four for your dog. It is easy for them to get tired or too hot. Bring a water bottle or portable bowl and stop to feed your dog if you notice the walk has become sluggish. Also, don’t push your dog too much on walks when it is hot, shorter ones can be better.
Try to walk your dog in the early morning or late at night. The cooler temperature during the mornings and evenings make a significant impact on how comfortable your dog is. However, if you can’t take your dog as these times, try using dog booties. Because dogs absorb and release heat through their feet, these shoes prevent the transfer of heat on the pavement.
Add a few ice cubes to your dog’s water bowl. They will definitely love the cool treat in their dish. If you are in the car with your dog, you can even get them a cup of ice. That way they can lick it to cool them down.
Make sure their water bowl is up to par. Water bowls need to be cleaned daily, yet, often they aren’t. If bacteria forms on or in the bowl, your dog may not want to drink it, defeating the purpose of the bowl and leading to further dehydration. Make sure it is full throughout the day.
Wrap them in a wet towel. The direct contact with something cold will immediately cool them down and make them more comfortable. You can even make a cooling vest that dogs can wear (Find out how here).
Keep your eyes out for signs of dehydration. The most common symptoms are less animation, being visibly tired, excessive panting, sunken eyes with lack moisture, and dry mouth, gums, and nose. If your dog is refusing to drink water, contact your vet immediately.