The sun had just began to rise when pet owner Angie Smith and her Chihuahua, Whiskey, made their way to the Sunset Park Dog Park. Although the park opens at six, many owners arrived as early as 5:30 a.m. to get their pets some time outside. With summer temperatures consistently reaching over 100 degrees, owners have few options to try to beat the heat.
Located on East Warm Springs and South Eastern, the park includes divided sections for small dogs like Whiskey and for dogs over 35 pounds as well. Pet owners have the chance to interact with owners as their dogs play in the wide spread of grass. Although the park had been only open for an hour, many dog owners began to leave. While water is available, shade from the heat wanes as the day continues. Knowing when the heat is too dangerous for your pet is crucial for their safety.
Having access to food and water is important regardless of the temperature outside. As the heat continues to increase, pet hydration is crucial to avoid dehydration. If your pet must be outside be sure to have plenty of cold water available. A pet’s internal temperature is higher than our own, according to Sunridge Animal Hospital.
To ensure your pet stays cool, staying indoors is the best option. The sun is highest between 12 – 3 p.m. and it is recommended sun exposure is limited during this time. Dogs with brachycephalic have the most risk for heat injury. This syndrome occurs when the snout is short, for example bulldogs and pugs.
Due to cement’s capability to hold heat, walking your pet may bring harm to the pads on their feet. To best test if the ground is too warm, place the palm of your own hand on the ground. Sunridge Animal Hospital suggests to refrain from walking pets from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the summer season.
If you notice an animal that may be suffering from the heat please seek the help of an animal hospital, according to training Veterinarian Technician Brain Heenan.