Hot Weather Safety Tips for your Pet |Cave Creek, AZ

Hot Weather Safety Tips for your Pet |Cave Creek, AZ

water bowl - dog

School is out for summer! While you may be looking forward to the soaring temperatures of the hottest season of the year, it isn’t necessarily good news for your pet. Not all animals are as well equipped to deal with serious heat, and since there is an obvious communication barrier between them and us, our pets are reliant on us taking steps to keep them cool and safe when the mercury rises.

To help you help your pet, we have put together this list of valuable hot weather safety tips to ensure your adored animal is safe this summer.

Make sure your pet has access to shade at all times

It is absolutely fine for pets to remain living predominantly outside, but being in the direct sunlight all the time, especially in the hottest part of the day, can be dangerous. Even with a furry coat pets can get sunburnt too. Plus, it is much hotter in the direct sun than in the shade which puts your pet at greater risk of developing heatstroke. Make sure that your pet has somewhere shady to retreat to when she needs to.

If you are heading out in the sun, use sunscreen on your pet too

As mentioned above, pets can be affected by sunburn too, particularly if they are short-haired and have pink skin. If you are planning on letting your pet spend some time in the sun, we recommend that you use a veterinary-approved sunscreen. Don’t use your own on your pet. Human sunscreens contain ingredients that are toxic to animals.

Monitor how much your pet is drinking


You probably don’t need to pay a great deal of attention to how much your pet is drinking ordinarily. However, when the weather gets hot your precious pal will need to up her water intake if she is to avoid becoming dehydrated. Make sure she has access to cool, fresh water at all times and that you pay attention to make sure she is drinking enough.

Know the signs of dehydration

Dehydration is an issue that can have serious repercussions for the health of your pet. Knowing the signs is important as it means that you can take steps to rectify the issue and/or seek veterinary support quickly. Common symptoms of dehydration in pets include:

- Loss of skin elasticity

- Reduced energy levels

- Excessive panting

- Sunken, dry eyes

- Dry nose

- Sticky, dry gums

- Vomiting with or without diarrhea

- Loss of appetite

- Difficulty urinating or inability to urinate

Check ground temperatures before heading out for a walk

When we go for a walk, we tend to wear shoes which afford our feet some protection from the ground. This means that we often don’t realize just how hot the stuff beneath our feet can get, with sidewalks and sand reaching the highest temperatures. Taking animals for a walk on such surfaces can cause serious burns to their paws. For this reason, it is important that you gauge the temperature of the ground where you will be walking with your hand before you head out. If it burns the back of your hand it will burn your pet’s paws and you should save walking until it is cooler.

Know the signs of heatstroke

It isn’t just dehydration that you need to worry about affecting your pet in hot weather. Heatstroke is another very distinct possibility, and while it affects animals in the same way as humans, in animals it can be life-threatening. Getting veterinary help as soon as possible is essential. Some of the most common symptoms of heatstroke in pets include:

- Excessive panting

- Drooling

- Agitation and restlessness

- A bright red tongue

- Increased heart rate

- Breathing problems/distress

- Vomiting and/or diarrhea

Don’t leave your pet in a hot car

Last, but certainly, not least is possibly the most important advice that we can offer you. Don’t leave your pet in a hot car. It may not even seem that hot outside, but the inside of a car works like an oven and heats up to dangerous levels in under 10 minutes. Leaving a window open or parking in the shade won’t make any difference at all. Animals left in cars on even slightly warm days can develop heatstroke and die, so keep your pet at home instead.

If you would like more hot weather safety tips for your pet, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced veterinary staff who will be delighted to help you.