When the weather starts to warm up in Austin, residents take to the sidewalks, parks, and other outside locations. Getting fresh air and soaking up the sun is a welcome change from the cool winter months. Although snow and blistering temperatures are rare in this part of the Lone Star State during winter, spring and summer can bring scorching temperatures your body needs time to adjust to.The same is true for your furry friends. Walking your dog is necessary for their health. It’s also enjoyable for both of you and gives you a chance to bond. However, it can be dangerous when the temperature creeps up into the 80s and 90s. If you don’t take the necessary safety precautions, you place your dog at risk of medical problems and even death.Below are tips you should follow when taking your dog for a walk. These tips are crucial to giving your dog the daily exercise they need while protecting it from adverse environmental elements.
Plan the Right Schedule
Temperatures are higher in the middle of the afternoon and lower in the earning morning and late at night. Depending on your daily obligations, you should try to schedule walks with your dog when temperatures aren’t at their peak.As a dog owner, you understand the importance of maintaining a consistent schedule. Properly trained dogs learn when it’s time to go outside and when they should hold their pee so they don’t go on the floor in the house. As long as you stick to the schedule you create, there shouldn’t be any accidents, and you can avoid exposing your furry friend to the sweltering heat.
Test the Ground Temperature
Touch the ground with the back of your hand before leashing up your dog for its daily walk. Try to hold your hand to the ground for at least five seconds. It will be too hot for your dog’s paws if it’s too hot for you. They could suffer burn injuries if their paws touch the hot pavement.Wait for the ground temperature to cool down a bit before going for a walk. You can walk outside and test the ground at different times of the day to determine when it’s best to bring your dog out.Asphalt often heats up more than other materials, such as concrete. It’s also a higher temperature than grass. If you can avoid the asphalt and guide your dog along the grassy areas, you could protect it from burning its paws.
Adjust Your Route
Depending on the breed, your dog might need 30 minutes to an hour of exercise each day. Some breeds don’t require much physical activity. Whether you let your dog out in the backyard or take it around the neighborhood, think about adjusting the route you take.When it’s too hot for a 30-minute walk, you can break it up into two 15-minute walks. Or you can change the direction of the walk, so you’re underneath trees and other coverings to keep your dog out of the sun. You could even opt for flat ground instead of hills, so you and your dog don’t become worn out.
Dehydration occurs quicker in warm weather. When you exert energy, you sweat more. You should bring a bottle of water with you each time you bring your dog on a walk. Carry a bag with ice water stored in an insulated travel cup.You can also bring a collapsible water bowl for your dog to drink out of during breaks. If your dog seems out of breath, stop and let them rest. Whatever you do, never let your dog drink water from a pond, lake, or river. It could contain bacteria that make it sick.
Don’t Leave Your Dog in the Car
Many people bring their dogs to the park, pet-friendly restaurants, and other public places when temperatures rise. On your way to your destination or home, you might need to stop for gas or groceries. You might think you can leave your dog for a few minutes without it suffering any harm. Unfortunately, that could prove fatal.Even if the outside temperature is 70 degrees, the inside of a vehicle could reach the triple digits in about 90 minutes. Your dog could become dehydrated. Some dog breeds are more sensitive to heat than others and could experience heat stroke. You’re better off bringing your dog with you when you park your car or drop them off at home so they can enjoy the air conditioning while you run your errands.
Walk! ATX offers comprehensive services to pet owners. We started out as Austin dog walkers, but now we can walk your dog, board your cat, or provide emergency medical care to your four-legged friend. With over ten years of experience in the business, you can rest assured your pet will be in capable hands when we care for them.Call us at (512) 655-9557 today to discuss your pet care needs with us.