Hot weather Hot dogs

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Pup-date: 
Feeling hot hot hot?? So Are the puppies! 

In a strange turn of events I had 3 of the 4 puppies living with me again for a few weeks. (the last one leaves this coming Saturday!)

This is a mix of wonderful and chaos! – They are 12 weeks old tomorrow and getting bigger and more adventurous. I gave up expecting any of my pot plants in the garden to survive this litter as for some reason lying on top of the little flowers and potted soil became a cooling option for these hot puppies! I guess my rosemary plant offers some sort of shelter from the sun as well because one of the puppies is often to be found nestled between the rosemary sprigs. - They all smelled like roast lamb when they came back inside!!
Thankfully the hot weather means that the puppies do sleep a lot too.

I thought I would share with you in this blog some tips for keeping puppies and dogs cool in this hot weather.

But first some... HOT WEATHER SAFETY TIPS
Dogs left in hot Cars
Leaving a dog in a car even for a short time is dangerous and potentially fatal. Please don’t do it. A car can become as hot as an oven very quickly, even when it doesn’t feel that warm to you. When it’s 22 degrees out, inside a car it can reach an unbearable 47 degrees within the hour!

Dogs cannot deal with extreme heat as we can – Dogs do not sweat. They only have panting available to them. Dogs die in hot cars. If your dog has separation anxiety it is still kinder to leave them distressed at home than take them somewhere that they have to remain in the car, there is no excuse, its not ok, please don’t do it.

Leaving your dog in a hot car is deemed animal neglect under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and you could be slapped with a fine.
Advice from RSPCA: Never leave your dog alone in a car on a warm day. If you see a dog in distress in a hot car, dial 999.
 
Walking a dog in the heat
Dogs can get heatstroke, and it is not advisable to take a dog out for a walk in the hottest part of the day (-which might surprise you to hear is actually around 3pm).

My older Cockapoo (age 10) would run after a ball every time you throw it even if he is too hot. He is just wired to fetch. If I were to take him out in the hottest part of the day and throw the ball he will run after it. He cannot self regulate. He does not make the best or safest choices. It is my responsibility to make sure I don’t put him at risk. Remember if the sun is beating down on concrete, it can be very hot and might burn their footpads too.

If you must take a dog out during the hot part of the day take water with you for the dog and choose to walk in a wooded area with lots of shade and breeze.

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HOT WEATHER FUN TIPS
On a very hot day Puppies can enjoy a baking tray full of ice cubes and water placed on the grass... they paddle in and out of the water and chase the ice cubes around. Frank particularly loves this game and he dives all 4 feet into the water and digs at the tray splashing water everywhere. This is all good for them as we don’t want our dogs to be afraid of water. 

You might find that puppies occasionally dig in their water bowls – this is most likely a way of cooling themselves down (by getting their paws wet). If you keep your water bowl somewhere easy to clean up it shouldn’t be too big a problem. Don’t worry about drying the puppy off in this weather. They love to go to sleep damp.

And that’s another tip... dampen an old clean towel in cold water and lay the damp towel on the floor for a dog to use to lie on and cool down.

Please Note: These tips are for puppies older than 8-10 weeks, supervised and only on hot days... Young puppies cannot regulate their temperature and you don’t want a young puppy getting too cold.

Another fun thing to introduce on a hot day for all age dogs is a paddling pool of water... maybe with a ball or plastic toy in it to chase around and to encourage the dog to get in and out of the water.

More cooling fun tips:
Give them a frozen carrot (it’s a great chew toy and cooling too)
Make your own doggy lollipops by freezing blended veg or meat broth in ice cube trays or in lollipop makers
Freeze some wet dog food inside a kong and let them work on that for a while.

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A note on Kongs:... I have used both the real kong made by “Kong” and the knock off cheaper ones. They don’t look that different at the start ... but it turns out that the cheaper version will quickly show evidence of chewing and there are clearly bite marks in the rubber which will eventually mean that bits of rubber will be bitten off. This does not seem safe to me. My advice is stick with the real thing... It may cost a little bit more but lasts a lot longer and filled with a yummy treat frozen inside it is one of the safest things to leave a puppy alone with for a while.
 
Have fun in the Sun with your furry ones
All the best
Lydia

Lydia Faithfull