Summertime with Beagles

There it is finally – the summer! We usually put up a small doggy pool for the dogs, there is regularly doggy ice in the freezer, and we prefer walks to the waters early morning or late afternoon – during the day the dogs are just lying around on the coolest places.

Our dogs are generally much more sensitive to heat than humans; dogs have fewer possibilities than people to regulate their body temperature by this weather. Contrary to the humans, dogs are not sweating on big surface and they can’t profit of the cooling down by evaporating. They have fewer sweat glands – mainly on their paws – and they hardly help by the thermal regulation. The thermal regulation happens on two ways by the dogs – through breathing and warm emission by the skin.

Heat can be very dangerous for our dogs!

Check our list of DOs & DON'Ts!

…DON'T do this!

  • On road by the midday heat

Better spare yourself or if absolutely necessary reduce the walks during the hottest hours. Avoid open meadows and fields without shade. City walks shall be a taboo during the day, as heat sums up in the bigger cities. Also avoid longer asphalt roads as the heat concentrates in the ground – overheated footpaths can burn the sensitive dog paws!

  • No sport

A further taboo is sport. The body temperature is getting higher by body efforts. Hearth and bloodstream are going to be strongly charged. To go cycling or jogging with the dog by 35 Celsius in shadow is not an activity but a cruelty!

Large playing rounds with buddies should also be avoided or at least placed in cooler day hours or take place by natural waters or in shade. Make efforts to ensure that your dog can cool down quickly and has plenty of opportunity to recover. Concentrated nose job is difficult in this weather and does not make sense. The respiration that the dog uses by nosework is completely different than the thermal regulation. The dog can’t expect full performance of his nose when his body is concerned with the compensation of the temperature. Nor can his body be effectively cooled when he is trying to lift his nose.

  • Dog in the car

Leaving any dog in a parked car is totally taboo! Every year there are plenty of warnings still dogs die every year in cars. Within a few minutes the temperature can double up in the car. Dogs can die in a parked car by this weather, even before the owner comes back of a short walk to the supermarket.

...DO this!

  • Water, water, water.

If you don’t have the opportunity to walk your dog directly by waters, you always shall take water with you, so that the dog can drink as much as possible. There are practical folding bowls that fit in your pocket or water bottles you can attach to your cloths. Dogs who like to swim, may be easily cooled down. For dogs, who only find the water nice up to their bellies, you can invest a little time and used them to be thoroughly "soaked" in water by humans. As the water evaporates, it helps them to cool their body. In extremely hot days we can shower off our dogs. There are special dog pools for home, but a children’s wading pool or plastic sandpits can offer the dog an additional cooling possibility – searching for treats, small apport games or watercourse are good for thermal regulation. We can simply moisten the dog a little on the legs and belly too. Please do not use ice cold water directly, especially not when the dog is already heated. Better lukewarm water that is gently used starting from the legs.  If the dog is not thrilled, we can still motivate with games and treats, or why not a little trick training in the water? "Put your paw in a bowl of water" would be a nice and at the same time a literally refreshing clicker idea for the summer!

  • Off to the ice cream shop

If no intolerance speaks against it, we can treat our beagle in the summer now and then with an ice cream! The simple yogurt variety from the ice cream shop, for example. But you can also do it yourself as a kind of doggy ice cream - just plain yogurt or cottage cheese in the freezer. Of course you can flavor it with a little canned food, baby food or sausage for flavor. Or make some fruit puree and freeze with water in a bowl. You can serve a longer ice joy with employment factor while stuffing and freezing a Kong! Notice my beagles prefer yogurt with honey and applesauce, but they also never say no for a baby food ice thinned with water! Be careful to test slowly if your dog tolerates the cold in his stomach!

  • Dog walking times

Walks should be possible done in the early morning or late evening when it is cooler. Keep he lunch time walk - if absolutely necessary - as short as possible. A dense forest is preferable to a walk to a wide-open field. And better avoid paths that offer no shade.

  • Sleeping and lying

At such temperatures, many dogs prefer cool places. Tiles, or stone floors, the space under a bush are very popular. In the hot summer, you can maybe put away the rug out of the way or even fill the dog's basket with cooler, thinner material. Outside, we can create more shade with umbrellas. Many dogs dig a hole in the ground in the garden to feel cooler in there. You really can accept this arbitrary landscape transformation as the dogs art for cooling.

  • Thorough grooming

Since dogs can give off heat on the body surface, it is logical - the less hair, the better (it of course never means to shave any coated dog, but to take care of their coat). No matter how long or short the fur of the dog is, regular brushing removes dead hair and facilitates cooling. It has indeed a reason that most of our beagles shed like crazy in summer. Thick undercoat needs to be thinned out. There are a variety of different tools that help to thin the undercoat of a dog, for example, the "Furminator". The more air can pass to the skin, the better.

Dog days to come!

Maybe some of these tips help you to spend the warm days more enjoyable with your dog.