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    How to Keep your Dog or Cat Cool During the Summer

    Large dog sitting on a porch.

    Dogs and cats are susceptible to heat stroke and overheating in the hot summer months. While humans have the ability to sweat from almost all parts of the body to regulate body temperature, cats and dogs only have sweat glands on their paws. Dogs and cats also pant to keep cool. With this in mind, it is important to make sure your pet has a place to cool off when the heat becomes unbearable. Here are a few tips for how to keep your pet cool during the summer:

    • Provide cats and dogs with a constant source of clean, fresh water. Consider purchasing an automatic waterer during the summer. This will help you keep bowls full as the summer heat increases evaporation.
    • Make sure your pet has access to shady areas of the yard or beneath the porch. It is not very nice to leave a dog restrained on a leash, dog runner or in a dog pen or kennel that does not have any shade.
    • Do not make your pet exercise during the hottest part of the day. Try to walk dogs early in the morning or later in the evening when the heat of the sun is not as intense.
    • Light-colored pets can sunburn easily, so watch for signs of burning such as pink or red skin, peeling skin or blisters on noses and ears.
    • Consider shaving your pet in the summer. Shaving long-haired cats and dogs is a good way to keep them cool as well as reduce fleas and ticks that love hiding in long hair.
    • Never leave your cat or dog inside a car in the summer for any amount of time. Temperatures inside cars quickly rise, and leaving any animal or human inside a parked car can cause death.