From sunscreen and zinc to wide-brimmed hats and beach tents, we take so many precautions to keep ourselves sun safe during summer. But what about our pets?
Have you ever wondered if your dog can get sunburnt or if your kitten can get heatstroke? The answer to both those questions is yes. In fact, pets can be just as susceptible to the dangers of the heat and sun as we are – so it’s important to make sure they’re safe and cool on hot summer days.
Walk them in the morning or evening
If you’re a dog owner, you’ll know there’s nothing more your four-legged friend loves than going for a long walk. But in summer, you should avoid walking your dog at peak temperature times like midday and instead try to go for a stroll early in the morning or later in the evening when the weather has cooled.
Keeping well hydrated is just as important for your pet as it is for you. Make sure your furry friend always has access to fresh, clean, and cool water. It’s good idea to have a water bowl both inside and outside, and to make a water bottle and dish with you when you’re taking them for a walk.
Is it time for a haircut?
While some thick coats can help insulate pets against sun and heat, the can also trap body heat in if a pet’s body warms up while exercising. A haircut will generally help your pet feel cooler and more comfortable, just brush out the undercoat so as to protect your pet’s skin from the sun.
Pet-friendly sun protection
You put a jumper on your pup in winter, so why not give it the same love in summer? Pale-coloured pets can benefit from rash tops to protect them from the sun, and sunscreen can be helpful as well. Human sunscreen is generally fine for pets, just avoid ones with zinc or salicylates in them.
Make sure they have plenty of shade
When it’s hot, keep your pets in cool shaded areas as much as possible. While pets love stretching out in the sun, they need cool, shady places to retreat to – both indoors and outdoors. Never leave your pets in confined spaces, such as a hot car or a cage – they need to be able to move around and get some air when they’re feeling the heat.
In the unfortunate event your pet starts showing signs of a heatstroke, it’s a good idea to know where your nearest pet store or vet is so you can get help.