It's English 'summer' again, and I put summer in inverted commas because the UK has a way of forgetting that this time of year is shorts and flipflops season, not raincoat and wellies season. Despite this, the summer has, weather-wise, gotten off to a pretty good start! Actually, according to some newspapers, it may be the hottest summer ever this year (like they say every year!).
But even if it isn't the hottest summer since Pangaea split, bear in mind that even mild heat can cause damage to your dog. Because of this, I've gathered together some Summer Top Tips:
1: No dogs left in cars. Ever.
You may have left the window open a crack, you may have left water out, you may only be popping into the shop for a second, but there is no ventilation in a car and it will heat up like an oversized microwave with your dog inside. There's no point risking it.
2: The 5 -second rule.
Hold the back of your hand on the pavement for 5 seconds, if it's too hot for your hand, it's too hot for your dog to walk on. The surface of pavements will absorb heat and hold onto it. Try walking somewhere cooler, like the forest or areas with water and shade.
3. Take water out with you on walks,
and invest in a kids' pool for your dog to paddle in at home.
4. Tropical storms.
So maybe 'tropical' is being a bit hopeful, but storms happen in the summer, and they can be scary for your pet. Make surethey have a place to feel safe and that they can't escape from your house or garden; scared pets often bolt.
5. Evening and early morning walks.
Even if you are cautious, if a dog does too much exercise under the midday sun, they can get burnt, dehydrated or suffer from heatstroke. If you have an energetic pup, wake up an hour earlier, or go to bed an hour later, so you can walk them when it's not too sunny.
And most of all... Enjoy your summer!