Protecting Your Dog This Summer

Protecting Your Dog This Summer
By: CJ Cassidy

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. -- We all want to do the best by our canine companions, but are you really protecting them from the sun?  Overexposing your dog to the sun can bring on heatstroke, especially when temperatures reach the 90°'s.

Experts say keep your dogs out of the heat.  You can also trim their hair, but don't shave it under an inch.  That won't help cool your pet.  It could actually end up hurting them, by taking away their insulation.
"When you shave them down shorter than that, their skin is exposed and their skin is not used to being exposed," Lynette Sticht with Happy Tails Daycare in Cape Girardeau says.
Experts say that could leave your pet with a serious sunburn; not to mention, more open to attracting fleas and ticks.
But Sticht says the biggest mistake people make is leaving their pets locked up in a vehicle, as the sun burns brightly overhead.
"It takes just a few minutes for them to get hot in there too hot for them to handle. I can jump over a 100° in just a few minutes," she explains, and that can be fatal to your dog.
Calvin Brennan considers his dog Sage, family; so he doesn't hesitate to speak up when he sees people getting careless with their pooches.
"If they leave their dog in the car when it's hot, I make sure they go out, turn the air conditioner on get them out of the car," he says.
Marcus Bond dresses to match his dogs when he goes walking, and while his canines might want to carry on, Bond knows when to call it quits.
"I try to watch them to see if they're panting excessively it might be overheating them, so I stop to get some water," he says.
Carry water with you is a good idea and veterinarians suggest taking your pet inside when it gets too hot.
You could also use special doggie sunblock to protect your furry friend, but make sure you check with your vet first, to see if your dog could be allergic to certain creams.