The Best Ways to Keep Your Dog Safe and Cool this Summer
For many of us, traveling without our favorite four-legged family member is just not an option. Here at Asheville Connections we feel the same way. Asheville is a great place for dogs. Many places are dog-friendly and with loads of parks and things to do, your pup will have the time of his life visiting Asheville with the family.
Know your breed
Not all dogs handle the heat the same way. It is important to be mindful of your dog’s breed. Dogs that are brachycephalic (have a short head and snout), such as Bulldogs, Boxers, Japanese Chin, and Pekingese, have an especially hard time in the heat because they do not pant as efficiently as longer-nosed dogs. Panting is how dogs regulate their body temperature, so anything that impedes their panting can cause problems. You'll need to consider keeping these breeds inside with air-conditioning during the hottest parts of the day.
Plan your hikes
Dogs love a good hike as much as their owners do, but it is important to plan your hikes to maximize your dog's health and comfort. Avoid exercising your dog strenuously on extremely hot days. Take hikes in the early mornings or evenings, when the sun’s heat is less intense. Another helpful tip is to pick Asheville hikes that are in the cooler canopy of the woods and that come across rivers, waterfalls and other bodies of water.
Cars are dangerous for dogs
Even in the fall and winter, cars can be dangerous places for dogs, but in the summer a car can be extremely dangerous. It takes only a few minutes for the interior of the car to reach extreme temperatures! If you have to leave your dog in the car, leave someone in the car with the dog, so you can leave it on with the air conditioner running.
Tip- Keep your dog cool in the car by putting ice packs wrapped in a towel in his crate. Make sure the crate is well ventilated.
Watch for signs of trouble
A dog's normal temperature is between 100° and 103°F, while a normal temperature for cats ranges from 100.4º to 102.5ºF. Anything higher than that means your dog is in danger. Dogs don’t sweat like we do. Instead, they pant to regulate their temperature. Drinking water is the other main way they maintain their temperature.
Watch for these possible symptoms of overheating:
- Heavy panting
- Dry or bright red gums
- Thick drool
- Wobbly legs
Water is key
Having plenty of fresh cool water available to your dog is critical on hot days. Of course, there are plenty of different ways to enjoy cool water during your Asheville vacation. The area is loaded with hikes that end at waterfalls or along rivers such as the French Broad River. A quick dip in the water is a great way to help your dog cool off on a hot day.
Looking for a great hike or looking for a waterfall to visit? Check out our previous post: Plan Your Asheville Waterfall Adventure
Create a travel packing list
- Dog Food (vacation is not the time to try a new brand)
- Favorite chew toy, or other toys
- Dog waste bags
- Any medications
- Treats and snacks
- Grooming supplies, favorite blanket or bed
- Make sure your dog is microchipped and/or has a dog collar with owner info
- Food and water dish
- Lead and leash
Escape the summer heat by heading to the Asheville Mountains. We have a great family-friendly destination that is perfect for you and your dog. Give us a call today at 828-274-6978 or click the button below to see all of our beautiful cabins.