keep pets cool in summer

Dr Katrina Warren is a veterinarian and one Australia’s most loved and trusted pet experts. She is the PAW by Blackmores ambassador.

With temperatures rising above 36 degrees already this summer, it’s no wonder we find ourselves seeking refuge from the heat in air conditioned rooms and shaded areas. The Australian summer can feel unbearable, but imagine having to face the heat in a winter coat like our furry friends. Ensuring the wellbeing of our pets is just as important as safeguarding our own. PAW by Blackmores ambassador and veterinarian, Dr Katrina Warren shares her essential tips to keep your pets cool this summer.

1. Avoid the hottest part of the day

Try to walk your pets in the early hours of the morning or late afternoon when temperatures aren’t at their peak. Temperatures hit their highest between 10am – 3pm, so if you and your pet happen to be outside during this time (at the beach or park) try to avoid direct sunlight and find shelter in the shade. Keep in mind that during these times pavements may be too hot for their paws to handle, which often results in burns and discomfort for your pets.

2. Be water wise

To prevent your pooch from getting dehydrated, it is important for them to have access to water at all times. Place multiple water bowls around the backyard and house, in areas that will remain shaded all day. Some dogs enjoy ice cubes to keep it cool.

3. Keeping pets cool

A quick and simple way to cool your pets is to give them a quick rinse with the hose or alternatively wipe them down with a wet towel or mist them with a cool water spray. For outdoor pets, try filling up a kids padding pool with a few inches of water and leave it in a shaded area so that they can lay in it any time for relief.

4. Shade havens

Pets enjoy basking in the sun just as much as we do, and just like humans too much exposure can cause heatstroke, sunburn and even skin cancer. It is important for us to know that white animals with pink skin on their nose and ears have a higher risk of getting skin cancer than other pets. Outdoor pets should always have shaded safe havens from the sun but the best option is to bring them indoors during the hottest parts of the day. If you can’t bring them indoors, apply pet friendly zinc to their ears, nose and belly for added protection from the sun.

5. Watch for indications and danger signs

Animals will display an array of signs they’re experiencing heatstroke, Signs include as elevated body temperature above 39.5°C, persistent and quick panting, vomiting, diarrhoea, looking stressed and agitated, collapsing, seizures, weakness and muscle tremors.

If you feel your pet is showing signs of heat stroke, immediately try to cool it down and take it to your veterinarian as soon as possible. Offer your pet cool water, wet its coat with a cool shower or hose (not ice), place a cool wet towel over it for transport and switch your car’s air conditioning to maximum.

You can catch Katrina Warren on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or her YouTube channel. Visit her website for more information.

Related links:

Dr Katrina Warren’s top 3 tips for a well-behaved dog

15 hilariously unphotogenic animals will make you smile

15 pictures that prove cats will sleep anywhere