Written by Hollie Williams, founder of Lawoofs of Devon.
Summer is finally here! After the year we've had, it's about time we all got to enjoy it.
And who better to take out on an adventure with you than your pawtastic buddy?
We all know how to prepare ourselves to be safe in the sun, plenty of sunscreen, light but covering clothing, and plenty of shade and water.
But do you know how to keep your dog safe when you're heading out to explore?
The hot weather and travel can be a dangerous combination for your furry friend.
Thankfully there are some simple steps you can take to keep your dog safe this summer.
Before you venture out check the temperature.
Depending on the breed and size of your dog, temperatures as low as 20°C run the risk of causing heat stroke in dogs. Too much vigorous exercise between 8am and 8pm, can cause serious, and in some case fatal conditions.
If you have to take your dog out on hot days, it is recommended that you try to avoid walking them on pavements and roads. Where possible always stick to grass verges.
We understand that this isn't always possible however.
To make sure your dog is not at risk of severe burns, hold the back of your hand against the pavement for 20 seconds.
If it is too hot to do this, then it is too hot for your dogs bare paws.
Consider investing in dog boots to protect their sensitive toe beans.
Always carry ice water with you.
Seriously always carry ice water with you!
Most dogs cover 2 - 3 times the ground you do when out on a walk and so they need a lot to drink, especially in warmer weather.
It's so important to take regular breaks and to offer your dog a drink regularly.
Thermal flasks are brilliant for maintaining the temperature of the liquid and the ice gives that added level of coolness when it's really needed.
An alternative to this would be to re-use an old plastic bottle, fill it with water and leave it in the freezer overnight. A few firm taps on hard ground will break the ice down and then you can feed the ice chips to your dog to keep it cool.
When out, if your dog appears to get too hot, another great doggy life hack is to use the ice water on a towel, or dog coat to cool them off.
Pour the iced water liberally over a towel, or inside of a dog drying coat and wrap your dog up in it. Sit them in a shady spot like this, with plenty to drink for 5 - 10 minutes.
Sunscreen for dogs
Did you know that dogs need suncream too? Any exposed skin, especially with short hair breeds, and around the noses and ears of most dogs, are susceptible to sunburn as much as we are.
Making sure to keep applying suncream to any exposed areas as you would for yourself, will help protect them from painful burns.
If you're taking your dog in the car to your next adventure, it's wise to consider a doggy car seat. Not only will they provide a comfortable and secure place for your dog to travel, but many owners find that they improve dogs anxiety and travel sickness in cars too.
The familiar enclosed feel to them, helps your dog to feel safe and happy. For small dogs, the booster seat allows them to see out of the car windows, which helps to reduce travel sickness.
And just to add to the benefits they keep your seats clean of dog hair and muck, a must have for any pet owner!
However you're choosing to enjoy the summer, whether close to home, or exploring further afield, we hope you and your four-legged friend have the most amazing adventures. But most of all stay safe and have fun!