It’s important to walk your dog as frequently as possible. A daily walk is a great way for both of you to get some exercise and to enjoy time together. You also get to explore the neighborhood, parks, or trails near home.
Walking your dog in the summer heat can pose challenges, though.. In fact, it can be downright dangerous for your dog. These tips will make it easier to enjoy your daily walk, even during the hottest months of the year.
Choose the Best Time of Day for Your Walk
Try to avoid the hottest part of the day when walking your dog in the summer heat. The best time of day is early in the morning. Not only is the air cooler, but the ground hasn’t had a chance to heat up in the sun. Later in the evening is also a good time, and a nice way to wind down after a long day.
Check the Ground Before You Walk
Sometimes the air can feel tolerable for a walk, but what about the ground? Sidewalks and streets can roast in the summer sun, making it dangerous for your dog’s paws. A good way to test the surface heat of the sidewalk is to place the back of your hand on it. If you can’t stand to keep your hand there, then it’s definitely too hot for your dog’s feet.
Map Out Cool Routes
You can choose cooler places to walk your dog in the summer. Aim for shaded streets or trails. Natural surfaces like trails tend to be cooler to the touch than paved sidewalks or roads. You can walk in the park and take advantage of the cool grass. Just make sure you bring along poop bags wherever you wind up going.
Don’t Push It
Getting exercise is great, but make sure you don’t give your dog too much activity in the heat at once. Take time to cool off. If you feel like walking more, split it up and go in the morning and again in the cooler evening hours.
Bring Plenty of Water
As always, make sure you and your dog both have plenty of water on hand for your walk. You both need to drink more water than usual when out in the summer heat.
Talk with your veterinarian for more tips and to schedule a wellness check for your pet.