It is definitely still summer here in sunny SoCal! As devoted #dogpeople, we love to bring our pups everywhere with us - but as it gets hotter, we must keep their health and safety at the forefront of our minds to eliminate any emergencies.
I was hiking Griffith Park last weekend on a HOT day (80+ degrees) and it was astounding to me how many people actually thought it was ok to bring their dogs on this grueling hike with them! It was entirely too hot for any dog to be out there. Some of them had resorted to taking breaks in the scarce shade that lined the trail, panting literally nonstop, unable to cool down. It was concerning to me because very rapid and consistent panting is an early sign of overheating. What most people think to do in this situation is to wrap the dog in a cold towel or blanket to immediately lower their body temperature. This is actually what you should NOT do as the shock in temperature can cause more immediate, serious issues. The best method of cooling down an overheating dog is to lower the temperature of the air they are breathing in. This can mean: holding them in front of a fan or air conditioner, placing them on a cooling pad, or laying them flat (belly down) on hardwood floor or tiles.
If you are still wanting to take advantage of being outdoors, a great alternative to a hike is a dog beach! There are a few off-leash dog beaches in SoCal (Malibu and Rosie’s in Long Beach) that you can enjoy that are safer than a hike for several reasons. Firstly, the temperatures are always slightly cooler by the water. When your dog is playing in shallow water, chasing a ball for example, the water is already helping maintain the dog's appropriate body temperature. Of course, it will still be pretty warm at the beach but if you are playing safely, taking breaks as needed, etc. then you are in a much better position than you would be on a hike. Plus…let’s be real, dogs are happiest at the beach (someone please prove me otherwise?)
Below are some products to ensure that your dog has a fun and most importantly, safe summer. Click photos to shop!
*Uncommon Goods Dog Bowl Water Bottle
*American Kennel Club (AKC) Pet Cooling Mat
*Frenchie Bulldog Supply Cooling Bandana
*Keep Doggie Safe Cooling Dog Visor