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How to Keep Your Dog Safe in the Summer Heat, Plus Tips Regarding Health & Exercise

One thing that so many love about dogs in general, and especially about Doodles, is their willingness to accompany their humans on any kind of adventure.

Dogs are pack-oriented creatures and doodles specifically thrive on social interaction and exercise. They tend to be enthusiastic about being with their people and are athletic dogs who typically love hiking, running, swimming and many more fun activities! 

The downside to this happy-go-lucky, always-up-for-adventure attitude is that your doodle may not know when to stop or slow down in the heat. Many owners who have experienced heat-related medical issues, such as a heat stroke, in their dogs missed the subtle warning signs. A dog may push past feeling overheated or tired because of their strong desire to be with and please their humans.

If running or hiking in the heat, it is important to take breaks to assess how your dog is doing. Depending on your dog’s fitness level and the temperature (anything over 75 degrees Fahrenheit / 24 degrees Celsius can be quite hot for your dog depending on other factors including humidity and intensity of exercise), take breaks every 3-15 minutes and pay attention to what your dog does.

If your dood sits or lays down, this is definitely a sign of exhaustion. On the other hand, if he seems eager to keep going and seems restless upon stopping, then he or she likely still has some energy in the tank!

Panting is a normal reaction for a dog when exercising. Humans release excess heat through sweating, dogs release it though panting. So if you have been exercising on a warm day, you can expect heavy panting from your dog, but the panting should start to gradually slow a bit after you have stopped activity for a minute or two. If your dog continues to pant heavily or the level of panting increases upon stopping, then you know it’s time to head home. 

It is also important to watch your dog after returning home from exercise (read more about their general exercise needs here). Your doodle will likely drink some water and lie down to rest. This is perfectly normal. But after a nap, he/she should be back to his usual ways of wanting to play ball or whatever else he might do for fun during the day. If you notice your dog seems excessively tired for more than an hour or two after your exercise, then you may have overdone it. 

Ways to keep your dog safe from the heat

Dogs primarily release heat through their paws and secondarily through their tummies. Doodles in particular may need special attention paid to these areas during the summer months as their ever-growing coat can prevent them from releasing heat effectively. Keeping their paws and belly trimmed short during the warmer months can do wonders for keeping them cooler!

Bringing along a portable water option for your dog is one way to help them stay hydrated and avoid overheating. If you know your dog is very hot and you need to cool him down quickly, applying cold water to the paws and tummy can help!

Sticking with the theme of keeping those paws cool, avoid walking your dog on hot asphalt. At a certain temperature, the asphalt can actually be dangerous and cause burning/blisters on your dogs’ paw pads. But even in less-than-dangerous temperatures, your dog will stay cooler if he is walking on grass, dirt or a crushed gravel trail.

Other small factors can make a big difference with the heat. Walking in the morning or evenings as well as opting for a shady path rather than direct sunlight can make all the difference in your doodle’s comfortability in the hotter months. Also pay attention to the humidity level as this has a dramatic effect on your dog’s cooling system of panting.

The higher the humidity, The more your dog is at risk of overheating. Dogs use panting to evaporate moisture from their lungs which in turn reduces body heat, so the moister the air, the less effective this natural cooling system is.

In conclusion, doodles make incredible exercise buddies. They seem to be always up for an adventure and are usually quite obedient and trainable. These traits do mean you need to keep an extra close eye on them in the heat as they may be more inclined to keep up with their favorite human than to heed their body’s call to slow down or cool down.

Jenna and the JLDD Team

Factoid #1:

Your puppy needs structured exercise from a young age, but you don’t want to overdo it! Generally speaking, between 5-15 minutes twice a day per month of age, starting at two months and tapering off around 4-6 months.

Factoid #2

Young dogs, old dogs, overweight dogs and particularly large dogs are the most prone to getting overheated.

Factoid #3

Heat stroke is extremely dangerous with a high mortality rate. Signs of heat stroke include pale or blue/purple gums or tongue (gums are ordinarily pink colored), an unsteady gait, disorientation and lethargy.

More About Us: Our Doodle Adoption Process

Once you have decided that one of our doodles is the right addition to your family, simply ask us about available & upcoming litters. Upon the payment of a deposit, you will have the chance to choose a pup. As a specialized doodle breeder, a puppy matchmaking service is provided. 

Adopting a Doodle puppy is a truly exciting experience your family will never forget. To help you and your new puppy adjust, Puppy Culture, a socialization program, is implemented. New pups are introduced to various stimuli in a safe environment. This helps build their confidence before leaving for their new homes. A unique puppy training program encourages potty, leash and crate training. 

To begin the adoption process, submit a Puppy Adoption Application and we’ll contact you to guide you step-by-step through the adoption process.

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