- Posted by Emma Witkowski
- On June 15, 2016
- 1 Comments
- cat visits, dog walkers, dog-walking, freethelegs, fur coat, harbourfront, hot weather, panting, Pawsway, pet services, puppy visits, summer, Toronto, toronto dog walking, water breaks, wet suit
I officially declare it’s summer. I’ve already forgotten what it’s like to live a life without sweat and sock tan lines. The other day I put pants on instead of shorts for the first time in a couple weeks and my legs felt trapped.
And now wherever I go, the smell of sunscreen goes also.
So now that it’s officially summer, it’s time for a PSA. For all dog owners and dog walkers and the citizens of the world who see dogs being owned or walked, please keep in mind: dogs cannot move the same way they did when it was 10-20 degrees out.
A dog is not being lazy if they lie down on the concrete or cool grass in the middle of a walk. They are not being disobedient if they pull towards a water bowl they pass by. And they’re not being silly if they are panting so hard it looks like they’re smiling.
Remember that dogs can’t sweat and their internal temperatures can only get up to 41 degrees before it gets life threatening. Imagine putting on a wet suit that traps your sweat in, and then wearing a fur coat on top of that (metaphor borrowed from this rather passionate article).
Except this doesn’t work as a true comparison, considering that once you don’t feel like going with the wet suit + fur coat combo anymore, you can just take it off.
This is the closest thing I could find…doesn’t that look uncomfortable?
Or if you’re really committed to this sweet fashion piece, you can at least communicate to whoever is walking you (none of my business) that you’re not feeling great and need a rest.
Dogs are not able to take it off, and they can only communicate so much. It’s your job as a responsible pet owner, pet worker, or citizen of the dog world to notice when they’re saying “It’s too hot out and I’m uncomfortable.”
Hear are some things to keep in mind when it’s hot:
- Make sure they’re well hydrated. Always bring water with you on the walk, and take advantage of the businesses who leave water outside. Note to store fronts: More water bowls please!
- Walk in the shade when you can.
- Play in water! Take them to an off-leash beach area, or use a sprinkler in your own back yard.
- When it’s really hot out, avoid concrete – it can hurt their paws! A good test is to put your palm on the ground. (Toronto folks, you might want hand sanitizer for this one.) Can you keep it there for 5 seconds without getting uncomfortable? If not, then it’s too hot for them to walk on.
- If they stop walking, or are panting really hard, i.e. are too tired to walk, find shade and let them rest. If you can carry them, now is a good time to bring them home.
- Shorten your walks if need be. Don’t make forcing them to exercise a priority over their life. Play with them inside more! Or, there is an inside off-leash area at PawsWay by the harbourfront that you can use for a small fee. Just check out their website for times.
Walk My Dog Toronto offers dog-walking services in downtown Toronto. With easy online booking, we walk your dog while you are busy or at work. We give your dog love, socialization, and exercise, and we keep in touch with you every step of the way with our walk tracker.