6 Tips to Keep Your Dog Cool This Summer

During these dog days of summer, it’s tough to keep cool — especially when you’re wearing a fur coat. It’s easy for your best friend to overheat, which poses dangers to his health. Luckily, there are some simple ways to help keep your dog comfortable during the hot summer months. We’ve pulled together a few of our favorite ideas below.

Help Your Canine Beat the Summer Heat

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Get Up Early for Walks

Your dog still needs exercise during the summer — but you don’t want to take him out during the hottest hours of the day. Instead, wake up a little early to take your pooch for a walk or wait until after the sun sets in the evening to go for a stroll.

dog drinking water

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Provide Lots of Cool Water

You might notice your dog lapping up more water than usual on hot days, so make sure to keep his bowl filled with fresh water. He might also appreciate some ice cubes in there to keep it extra cool. And if you’re refilling it outside, check first to make sure you’re not filling it with water that’s been heated up in the sun.

Hand Holding Ice Cubes

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Give Him Icy Treats

Dogs appreciate a cool treat on a hot day just as much as the kids do. Your canine might like licking an ice cube or lying on a big block of ice — just wrap a towel around the ice so your dog's skin isn't in direct contact with it. You can also freeze his Kong to provide frosty fun or make a "pupsicle" with dog-safe ingredients like bananas, peanut butter or chicken broth.

dog playing in sprinkler

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Play in the Water

Going for a swim or running through the sprinklers is a great way to leave your pup cool and happy. Keep in mind, though, that not all dogs know how to swim. Your dog might need a life vest to stay safe in the pool, river, lake or ocean. And some dogs shouldn’t swim at all, so it’s best to ask your veterinarian before taking the plunge.

dog drinking from water bottle

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Teach Your Dog to Drink From a Water Bottle

This is a handy trick when you’re out exercising with your dog. Drinking from a water bottle comes naturally to some dogs, but others need a little help. For these dogs, trainer Mikkel Becker recommends getting a pet adapter for a standard water bottle, which allows you to adjust the water flow.

dog sleeping on tile floor

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Leave Him at Home

Your dog might love going everywhere with you, but keep in mind that when it’s hot out, he might be happier at home. That will help you avoid leaving him in a car that can quickly heat up. On extremely hot days, consider cranking up the air conditioning, especially if your dog has heart or breathing problems or is a flat-faced breed. Another simple way to help your dog stay comfortable is to give him access to rooms in the house that tend to be cooler than others — a cold tile floor, for example, is great for napping on in the summer!

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