In Ohio, summer means good weather and lots of daylight. There are long days spent at the park, on the lake, or at backyard BBQs. It’s also a great time of year for playing outside with our furballs. But with more time outside and the hotter temperatures, there are some safety considerations to keep in mind to keep your dog safe!
1. Never leave your dog in the car
We all know this rule, but unfortunately, many dogs are still brought to the vet after being left in a hot car. At 85 degrees, the temperature in a car with the windows cracked open can reach 102 degrees in about 10 minutes, and 120 degrees in about 30. At 120 degrees, pets can suffer irreversible organ damage or even die. For reference, the average high temperature in Columbus, Ohio for June, July, and August is over 80 degrees.
2. Save outdoor play for mornings and evenings
To best protect your dog from the sun and heat, plan your outdoor time and walks for mornings and evenings, when it is cooler. Hot temperatures and high humidity can cause heatstroke, but that’s not the only potential harm. Dogs can also suffer sunburns, and blacktop pavement can burn their paws.
3. Bring water to keep your pup hydrated
Dogs can quickly get dehydrated in the summer sun. If you’re going to be out for awhile, make sure to bring water with you that your pup can drink. You may need to invest in a travel water dish if you frequently spend a lot of time outdoors. It’s also better to provide smaller amounts of water more frequently than a large amount all at once.
4. Get your dog a lifejacket if you’ll be near water
Just like humans, dogs in a boat, canoe, or other water vehicle should wear a lifejacket. Even the best behaved dogs may end up accidentally jumping or falling overboard. Currents, undertows, and choppy waters can all make it more difficult for your dog to swim back to you, so all dogs should wear life jackets, whether or not they’re good swimmers.
5. Check for ticks
With more time outside, the more likely it is that your dog will pick up a tick. It’s best to check your dog for ticks after every time they’ve been playing outside, especially if they’ve been playing in a dense field or wooded area. Other pests and parasites abound this time of year too, so make sure your furball is on flea and heartworm medication.
Keeping your dog safe in the summer comes down to one main thing: keep a close eye on your furball. Make sure your pup is safe, hydrated, protected, and pest-free, and you two will be able to enjoy all that the long summer days in Columbus have to offer.