It fills me with anger when I see people walking their dogs on pavements at the height of the day when we have temperatures of over 25 degrees.
This spring and summer we've continuously seen days exceeding this temperature, professional dog walkers understand the issues this can create for the pets in their care and take the necessary precautions to protect them. Many will opt to walk dogs early, but where owners will be out all day, this isn't always possible, so they'll take them into gorgeous woodlands that offer far cooler conditions.
So what can you do to keep your dog safe?
Avoid the heat of the day - where possible walk your dog early in the morning, or late in the evening.
Check the temperature of the pavement (or sand), if you can't hold your hand still for at least 10 seconds, it's far too hot for your dog's paws.
Take water - we get thirsty walking in the heat and so do our dogs, take plenty of water with you
Take cover - find a nice cool area to walk your dog, woodlands or parks with shaded streams
Never, ever, ever leave your dog in a hot car. Even with water available, parked in the shade and the windows down, a car will become uncomfortable and distressing within a very short space of time and this can prove fatal.
Professional dog walkers know the signs of heat exhaustion and how to safely cool a dog down quickly, but do you?
A rapid pulse
Lack of coordination
Vomiting or diarrhoea
Loss of consciousness
So, what can you do to cool your dog down quickly:
Don't: Shower it down with ice cold water - this may cause your dog to go into shock which can be fatal.
Do: Get your dog into the shade as quickly as possible
Do: Wrap your dog in cool, wet towels. The evaporation of the water will whip away the heat.
Do: Ensure your dog has access to water, but do not force consumption.
Do: Expose your dog's inner ears by folding them back and covering them with a cool flannel
If your dog isn't cooling down, take them straight to the vet.