Animals in hot weather can really have a unpleasant time. Imagine wearing a winter coat when it´s 35C! So what can you do to help dogs and cats in the heat? There are a lot of ways to make them more comfortable in high temperatures. Here are some ways to help animals in hot weather.
1. Car No Go
You´d really think that people would have learned this lesson by now – NEVER leave animals in a car. Even on a day that doesn´t seem too hot, the temperatures inside a car can rise rapidly to an uncomfortable level. Try to avoid transporting your animals in hot weather – and if you see a dog locked inside a car, don´t hesitate to seek help in getting them out. It could save their life.
Make sure that your animals have plenty of water in hot weather – it soon evaporates, and you will need to keep topping their water bowl off. This is also a good way to help other dogs and cats in the heat that don´t belong to you. Passing dogs will appreciate a bowl of water outside your place of work, and it´s also a wonderful way to help stray animals.
Would you like to be shut indoors without open windows or air conditioning on a hot day? Neither will your animals! Of course security is an issue, but make sure that there is some cool air circulating when you are not at home. You can always fit security grills so that you can leave windows open.
Another way to look after animals in hot weather is to give them a summer haircut! Many dogs will be much more comfortable after a visit to the canine hairdresser; a shorter coat will help keep them cool (just don´t give them a silly poodle cut, or the other dogs will laugh at them).
5. Outside Shade
Are your animals outside pets, or do they have access to an outdoors area? Make sure that they have ample shelter from the sun and heat, whatever the time of day (remembering that the sun and shade move around). If necessary, put up a shelter where they can get out of the sun.
6. Walk when It´s Cooler
Walks are obviously essential for dogs, whatever the weather (unless you have a yard where you don´t mind them messing). You probably don´t feel much like walking in the heat of the day, and neither will your dogs. The best time for walks is early or late, when the temperatures are cooler.
7. Screen Windows
An often overlooked aspect of caring for animals in hot weather is to make sure that they don´t escape through windows. Cats especially may try to get out, so ensure that windows are protected with screens. This helps avoid injury and them getting lost.
8. Veterinary Attention
Just like people, the health of animals can be affected by heat. If you´re at all concerned about your pets, don´t hesitate to take them to the vet to get checked out. It´s better to be safe than sorry. If there is something wrong, prompt attention may save their life.
If you´re wondering how to help dogs and cats in the heat (one of my cats is long-haired and really doesn´t enjoy the heat), there are lots of things you can do to make things more comfortable for them. And do keep an eye out for wildlife, stray animals, and anyone with stupid owners! What do you do for animals in hot weather – do you leave the air conditioning on all day for your pets, regardless of the cost?
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