With their big personalities and cuddly natures, our four-legged buddies always wants to be there for us during life's ups and downs. Their warm coats can make the hotter months a challenge, so be there for them, too, by helping cool them off.
While your fuzzy pal loves to be outside, you need to make sure he or she stays cool to avoid heat stroke. Here are some good ways to do keep your canine comfy in the heat.
1. Make Sure Your Dog Has Shelter
Make sure your pup has a doghouse or some form of protection from the sun in your yard. Shady trees or bushes will do the trick. If you live in an apartment, you can build a doghouse on your balcony or under any overhang that offers shelter.
2. Keep Water Out
Make sure there is more than one fresh, cold bowl of water in the yard, or wherever your dog likes to hang out. Toss some ice cubes in a few times a day to keep the bowls cool as long as possible.
3. Create a Pup Tent
A simple shade solution is to hang a tent for your pooch. Use a crisp, cotton sheet and drape it over a hammock or a clothesline.
4. Frozen Broth
Make your pawed partner some chilly treats using ice trays. Fill them up with veggie, turkey, or chicken broth, doggy's choice, and keep them on hand for when your dog is in drooping-tongue mode.
5. Electric Fan
Install an outside fan on a gazebo or deck, or plug in a tall stand fan so your cooling canine can spread out.
6. Frozen Yogurt
Make your own dogsicles! Combine two six-ounce containers of any non-fat, plain yogurt, two tablespoons of creamy peanut butter, two tablespoons of honey, and a third of a cup of sugar-free applesauce in a bowl. Pour the mixture into Popsicle molds or ice trays, then freeze them solid for another cool, pick-me-up treat.
7. Outdoor Shower
Install an outdoor shower like the ones at your neighborhood pool, and turn it on throughout the day to cool off your fur-coated friend. It’s not a bad time to give them a bath at the same time!
8. Puppy Pool
Dogs like golden retrievers and other hunting breeds like to swim, so buy a kid’s plastic pool, and keep it filled in your yard for your doggo to take a dunk whenever he or she wants. Just be sure you are around to supervise so playtime stays safe.
9. Chilly Wrap
Create a cooling bandana to wrap around your dog's neck. Sew a seam, then fill it with crystal polymer cooling beads (you can find these at a crafts store), or small ice packets you freeze beforehand to keep Fido chilly. He’ll look and feel cool at the same time.
Install pavers in your yard or on your patio to keep your bare feet and your dog’s paw pads cool. Natural stone is a good choice, since it tends to resist getting too hot.
If you have some patio seating or tables, your dog can cuddle up under them and take a snooze in the shade. If you're buying new outdoor furniture, consider what kind of crawl-space they offer when you're checking out your options.
Large patio umbrellas are also an excellent source of shade, and can be placed in and around grassy areas your dog can use to rest, or keep an eye on any nearby squirrels. They're a great way to add a splash of color, too.