Summer and more so heat can cause a whole raft of health concerns for dogs, so keeping them cool is important. Here are some great ways to do so.

Never leave your dog sitting in your car when it is hot outside.

The importance of this tip can’t be overstated. Dogs can develop potentially fatal conditions like heatstroke in a matter of minutes when left in a hot car. It doesn’t even have to be that hot outside for it to be a problem. For example, if it is 78 degrees outside, the interior of a car that is parked in the shade can quickly climb to 90 degrees. If that same car is parked in the sun, the interior temperature can skyrocket up to an astounding 160 degrees.

If it is warm outside, the best option is to leave your pet at home. If you have to bring them with you, make sure that you have a good supply of fresh water with a dish for your dog to drink out. Also some dog cooling pads, like the ones at And anytime you leave the car, bring your dog along with you.

Protect your dog against pests and parasites.

Dogs that are exposed to pests or parasites can develop serious problems including heartworm, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Lyme disease. It is important to remember that humans can also catch many of these diseases. Contact your vet for information on prevention methods available.

Don’t allow your dog’s feet to overheat.

When the sun is relentlessly beating down on a hot summer day, the temperature of the pavement or asphalt can be extremely high. Always do your best to keep your dog from walking on asphalt when it is hot outside. Otherwise, they may burn their feet. Additionally, it also makes them more prone to overheating since the hot asphalt can cause the temperature of their body to rise. Avoid allowing your dog to ride in the back of a truck on a hot day, as well, since the heat from the sun can increase the temperature of the metal truck bed to the point that it burns your pet’s paws.

Make sure your dog always has water and a shady place to cool down.

One of the reasons why dogs drink water when it is hot outside is to cool down. Make sure they have a fresh supply of water on hand so that they can drink as much as they need. Keep them in an area where they can spend time in the shade. Even though some dogs like laying in the sun, too much sun exposure can lead to heat stroke.

Provide a small pool for your dog to splash around in.

Pick up a kiddy pool from a local big-box store and keep it full of water on hot summer days. Most dogs love to splash around in the water, providing the perfect way for them to cool down when it is hot outside.

Supervise your dog when they are swimming.

There is a common misconception that all dogs are good at swimming. As it turns out, however, that isn’t always the case. Even if dogs can stay afloat, they may not be able to get out of a pool on their own. If no one is around to help them, they could wind up tiring out and drowning. To prevent problems like these, create barriers for your dog to prevent them from getting into the pool without supervision.

Protect your dog against sunburn.

You might be surprised to learn that dogs can get sunburn too. This is particularly true if they have short fur or if their coat is white or light in color. Along with being painful or uncomfortable, sunburns can also increase the risk of your pet developing skin cancer. Discuss sunscreen options with your vet so that you can find a formula that is safe for your dog. Don’t use human sunscreens on pets.