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Dogs Are Family: Summer Tips

Summer is HERE, which means great beach days and getting a gorgeous tan for us! But don't forget your pup! 🐶 Whilst they're just as excited about the warmer weather when it means trips to the beach and a dip in the pool, with the heat, comes plenty of things you need to be aware of! As even now spring temperatures have already reached significantly above 30'! This means that just like you your dog is going to be feeling the heat! 🔥 Remember your dog also has a fur coat on all day!

Want fantastic photos like this? Check out Furry Munchkins Pet Photography!



What can you do to help your dog in summer?

Help your dog keep cool:

Make sure your dog has access to a cool dry area! Even if your dog lives outdoor's make sure their kennel is a shaded area so that they can have some respite from the heat! If possible on extremely hot days make sure your pup stays inside.

Short nosed or flat faced dogs breeds are more susceptible to heat stroke e.g. Pugs, English bulldogs, French bulldogs.

One great option to help your dog keep cool is to purchase a cooling mat. These are filled with heat-absorbing gel which helps your dog cool down by absorbing your dog's body heat which then flows out of the bed and into the floor and air. A good quality cooling mat will be 15-20' lower than room temperature. These are also available in the form of jackets for larger dogs.


Water 💦

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Water is the most essential elements in allowing your dog to stay cool in summer! Make sure they have access to plenty of water at all times, preferably a number of sources in case they knock one over. Make sure that it's kept in the shade to keep it as cool as possible. Just like you, your pup would love a nice cool treat on a hot day, whilst they can't have an Icecream. A great way to treat your pup on a hot day is to freeze some ice cubes and leave them in their water bowl.

A great summer treat is frozen raw chicken wings which depending on the size of your dog will take them a while to get through!

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Or even better give your pup a little pool where they can take a quick dip! A kids clam shell pool is perfect for this!


When to exercise your dog?

In summer the best time to exercise your dog is in the early morning hours (up to 11 am) or in the late evening. (after 5 pm) This is particularly important for dogs with heavy coats that are not designed to withstand Australian heat such as Huskys or Bernese Mountain Dogs.


Best Dog-Friendly Sydney Beaches

One of the best ways to exercise your pup and keep yourself cool is to take a trip to the beach! Whilst not all beaches are dog friendly here are the top 3 Sydney beaches we recommend!


1. Sirius Cove (weekends)

Sirius cove is a fantastic dog beach, which plenty of parking and a spacious green for dogs to run around in if they don't feel like going for a dip! have look at our review here.


2. Greenhills Beach in Cronulla

Dogs can run around off leash at Greenhills Beach before 10am and after 4pm every day. It does get busy here but the beach is very well looked after with lots of space for both dogs and their owners to spend some quality time. Check out our review here.


3. Clifton Gardens Beach

Boasting a rocky beach with netted swimming enclosure, a fenced playground, change rooms and excellent BBQ and picnic facilities, Clifton Gardens Reserve has been a popular picnic spot for families since the 19th century. There are restrictions though. Dogs can go off-leash before 9 am and after 4 pm from April to September, and before 9 am and after 6 pm from October to May. Check out our review here.


Want fantastic photos like this? Check out Furry Munchkins Pet Photography!





What are the Dangers of Summer?

Heatstroke:

Heatstroke is a serious condition caused by a dog left for too long in a hot environment. Some dogs may be more prone to this condition than others such as Bernese Mountain dogs who have a thick fur coat. Heatstroke can be identified by a number of symptoms, the most common of which is excessive panting, however, there may be a number of other signs of discomfort such as:

  • drooling

  • reddened gums

  • vomiting

  • diarrhea

  • mental dullness

  • loss of consciousness

  • uncoordinated movement 

If your dog develops heatstroke take it to the vet immediately.

To avoid this make sure your dog is in a well-ventilated area with access to plenty of water and shade.


Sunburn:

Whilst you probably don't think about sunburn occurring in your pup due to their lovely fur coat, their more vulnerable areas where fur is shorter such as their noses are vulnerable to sunburn.


A dog's paws, in particular, are vulnerable to burning. To avoid this, before you let your dog step on a surface, test it with your hand, if you can't comfortably hold your hand on it, it may burn your dog's paws.


Having a dog with burnt paws is not a fun experience. Last summer we took my dog Star 🌟 on a walk without first checking the pavement, and a few hours later we noticed her limping around the house. She had unfortunately burnt one of her paws! This led to several vet appointment to make sure they healed up properly!



Leaving Your Dog in the Car:

Never leave your dog in the car. There are few things as dangerous as leaving your dog in the car on a hot day. It takes just 6 minutes for severe heat exhaustion to occur with disastrous consequences. If you'd like more information concerning leaving dogs in care take a look at the RSPCAs Just Six Minutes Campaign

Tests conducted by Melbourne’s Metropolitan Ambulance Service on a 29 degree day with the car’s air conditioning having cooled the interior to a comfortable 20 degrees showed it took just 10 minutes for the temperature to more than double to 44 degrees. In a further 10 minutes it had tripled to a deadly 60.2 degrees.

If you see a dog locked in a car on a hot day, call 000.


Fleas and Ticks

Fleas and ticks are abundant in summer! This means that you need to make sure that your pup is covered by his/her monthly flea and tick medication! If your pup isn't on medication or is behind schedule, you need to update it to make sure he's covered.


The most dangerous of the ticks, the Paralysis Tick, is most active in the period from spring 💐 to autumn 🍁 The tick’s saliva contains a toxin that causes the connection between the nerves and the muscles throughout the body in the dog or cat to become disrupted.

10,000 dogs are affected by ticks every year.

If your pup isn't covered we suggest getting them on Nexgard spectra which is the most complete protection from fleas, ticks, heartworm and intestinal worms available, in one monthly chew. It is not affected by bathing, swimming or shampooing.


If your pup isn't too good at taking a chew or you struggle to remember to give it to your pup, we suggest Bravecto Spot On which is extremely simple to apply with a few drops of liquid along your dogs back. It lasts for 6 months and provides protection from fleas, paralysis ticks, ear mites and tapeworm infections.



Want fantastic photos like this? Check out Furry Munchkins Pet Photography!


One of the most important things to do is to make sure that you perform a tick search every time your dog goes out! To perform a tick search run your fingers through your dogs' coat and systematically comb through your pup's hair searching for any irregular lumps. Don't forget to target places like your dog's ears (underneath) and paws (between toes)!

Attached ticks are firmly attached and feel like a hard smooth round irregularity on the surface of the skin.

Signs of Tick Paralysis:

  • Uncoordination.

  • Weakness.

  • Collapse.

  • Vomiting or retching.

  • Change of bark or meow.

  • Difficulty breathing.

If you find a tick on your dog we recommend you take your dog to the vet to have it removed --> Check with Keefe


Snakes:

The warmer weather prompts has prompted snakes to come out of hibernation! It is also snake breeding season, which means that younger snakes, often more deadly are out and about. Watch your dog very carefully in long grass or rocky areas where there are often plenty of places for a snake to hide!


If your dog is bitten by a snake, take them to the vet immediately. Try and identify the features of the snake that bit them.



Our Thoughts!

Summer can be a fantastic time of year, and lots of fun for both you and your pup as long as you know what to look out for! Do you have any other tips? or have you found our tips helpful? Let us know in the comments! For now, Star 🌟 is off on a trip to the beach! 🏖


Want to know more about the fantastic photos that being used in this blog? They're all from Furry Munckins Pet Photography!






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