Summer is the season of fun for humans, and it can be just as fun for their pets, too! With warm temps and long days, summer offers plenty of opportunities for you and your pet to enjoy social events, holiday celebrations, relaxed days at home, and beautiful outdoor adventures. Still, the summer season also poses unique challenges (and potential dangers) for our furry friends. Ensuring your pets stay safe requires a little extra attention during the year’s hottest months. Here are some essential tips to keep your pets healthy and happy all summer long.

Hydration is key.

Just like humans, pets need plenty of water to stay hydrated, especially during the summer. Make sure your pets always have access to fresh, cool water. Place multiple water bowls around your home and in shaded areas of your yard. Ice cubes can help keep water cooler for longer periods, and some pets may even enjoy licking or crunching on ice cubes (use crushed ice or small cubes to prevent choking). There are also pet-friendly water fountains available; they keep the water flowing, which keeps it fresh instead of stagnant, and encourages pets to take sips all day long. If you are taking your pet on an outdoor adventure this summer, even for your routine walk, bring water with you, along with a small bowl or specialized water bottle that allows your pet to drink comfortably.

Avoid the hottest times of the day.

Let’s face it: there are some summer days that are so hot that it’s simply miserable to be outside at certain times. The midday sun can be particularly harsh, so try to schedule walks and outdoor playtime during the cooler parts of the day, such as early morning or late evening. If you absolutely must go outside during the hottest parts of the day, keep it brief and stick to shaded areas as much as possible. One important thing to consider when scheduling your daily walks: walking on hot pavement can burn your pet’s paws. Asphalt can be up to 60 degrees hotter than the surrounding air temperature! Test the ground temp by placing your hand on the pavement; if it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet. Stick to grassy areas whenever possible or consider using pet booties to protect furry feet.

Never leave pets in a parked car.

One of the most dangerous places for a pet (or human) during the summer is a parked car. Even with the windows cracked, the temperature inside a car can rise rapidly. In fact, on an 80-degree day, the temperature inside a car can reach almost 110 degrees after just 20 minutes. (Imagine how hot it would get when the outside temperature is even higher!) Conditions like these can easily lead to heatstroke or even death. If you need to run errands at places where your pet is not welcome, leave your pets at home in a cool, safe environment. If you must bring your pet with you, ensure someone can stay with them in the car with the air conditioning running, to keep them comfortable and safe.

Related: Vacation Home Safety Tips

Create cool spaces.

Doesn’t it feel great to step into a cool space on a hot day? Your pets love the feeling, too. Make sure your pets always have a cool place to relax, especially during the hottest parts of the day. For more helpful information for HOA residents and board member, be sure to visit our blog or if you are interested in receiving a free HOA management quote for your community, contact us today.