Paw protection in the summer heat

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While we bask in the sun’s warm rays, knowing that summer weather only lasts until September and won’t return until May, our pets typically don’t seek out the heat. Not only is their situation made more difficult by the fact that their fur keeps them warm, but exposed body parts such as ears, noses, bare bellies and especially their sensitive paws are unprotected from the sun’s strong rays. And while in cold winter weather we are careful to wrap ourselves and our pets up against the cold, in summer we often fail to protect our dogs.

When the asphalt and pavements heat up in the hot sun, we often forget that this heat can pose a serious danger not only to us humans, but also to our four-legged friends, our dogs. Dogs’ paws are extremely sensitive to hot surfaces and are unprotected from injuries and burns.

Here are some useful tips on how to keep your pet’s paws safe during the hot summer months.

1. Walk the dog at the right time

The most important piece of advice we can give is to spend as little time as possible walking in the hot sun, especially at midday. During the hottest hours of the day (usually between 10am and 4pm), the tarmac and pavements become extremely hot. This can burn your dog’s paws in seconds. To avoid walking on hot pavements, choose early morning or late evening hours for walks, which is not only more pleasant for the dog, but also reduces the risk of paw burns.

2. Choose shady paths

If you do have to take the dog for a walk in the middle of the day, try to choose paths with shade. Shade protects paws from direct contact with hot surfaces, significantly reducing the risk of injury.

3. Test the surfaces

Before you walk your dog, touch the pavement or asphalt. If it feels too hot, it will be too hot for your dog’s paws. In such cases, look for a place where the ground is cooler or shaded.

4. Use paw protection cream

Dogs’ paws tend to dry out and crack in hot weather. The use of a paw cream helps prevent these unpleasant problems and moisturises and protects the skin of the paws. Choose a product that contains no harmful substances and is safe to use on dogs.

5. Refreshing rests

And don’t forget that on a hot day, your dog needs rest and hydration just as much as we do. When you go for walks, include frequent rests in shady areas and always take fresh water with you.

6. Recognizing the warning signs

Keep an eye on your dog’s behaviour during walks. If the dog’s paws seem uncomfortable or are visibly in pain, take him to a shady area immediately and check the paws.

How can we know that there is a problem?

Dogs producing the following symptoms may have burnt paws:

  • Limping or avoiding a walk
  • Licking or chewing the feet
  • The paw pads are darker in colour than usual.
  • The paws are visibly damaged
  • Blisters or redness of skin

If you think it’s necessary based on the above, make sure you visit the vet!

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