Be cool to your pet

Sarah, left, and Theodore Darga, of Rochester, and Aspen, a 2-year-old Siberian husky, listen to live music during the Dogs Downtown event Saturday, Aug. 4, 2018, at Peace Plaza in downtown Rochester.

You probably know not to leave your pet in the car when the weather is warm.

However, as the temperature climbs this week, all that sun may take a toll — even if you’re doing the basics and filling up the water dish regularly.

Amy Edwards, a certified vet tech at Heritage Pet Hospital, has a few tips for keeping Fido safe (and cool!) in the August sun.

Inside, outside

The first step toward keeping your pet cool is limiting time outside.


If a dog has to stay in a backyard, keep shade and fresh water available — preferably in several locations — and consider filling up a kiddie pool for dogs who spend time outdoors, Edwards said.

"Really, not leaving them outside for too long is the biggest tip," she said. "They can’t sweat like we do, so they overheat quickly."

Keeping a pet indoors, in an air-conditioned or well-ventilated area, is the best solution when the mercury climbs, Edwards said.

Fans, shade and even a few ice cubes to lick can help keep your pet cool. But Edwards said to also limit strenuous outdoor play when it’s warm out.

In other words, when the sun is high, leave the flying discs and tennis balls in the garage.

Hot foot

Even a quick walk outside can cause dogs to overheat (and extremely hot pavement can burn their feet).

"Even if it’s just a short walk, dogs can’t breathe in this type of humidity," Edwards said.


For severe cases of heatstroke, when a pet collapses or seems to be struggling to breathe, always consult a vet, Edwards said.

If a dog needs to be cooled down quickly, use ice packs, cold, wet blankets or towels or a garden hose to lower their temperature, stat.

Tyler Ferguson, of Rochester, holds a ‘pup’sicle for Sebastion, a 1-year-old miniature Australian sheperd, during the Dogs Downtown event on Aug. 4 at Peace Plaza in downtown Rochester.

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