How to enjoy the summer with your dogs

summer with your dogs

The Pet Carpenter team have been enjoying the summer sunshine recently, but for our dogs we know it’s not always as fun. Keeping our pets cool is always our top priority and while we know our pups love to settle down out of the sun, in their crates with a cool mat and snooze we also know they’re missing out on their favourite walks and outdoor adventures. 

In this blog, Beth Walker, Registered Veterinary Nurse, canine enrichment fanatic and founder of Enriching Paws, shares her top tips and activities to enjoy as the hot weather returns. 

**DISCLAIMER** We’ve recently seen a rise in social media posts claiming that ice can be dangerous to offer to pets during hot weather and in some cases claiming that it will increase your pets temperature. It’s important to be aware that ice treats and frozen meals are not a risk to your pet and that Ice is only NOT recommended for pets that are suffering from heatstroke. If you’re worried that your pet is showing symptoms of heatstroke please contact your vet immediately for the best advice. 

Enrichment Meals for Dogs

If you ever taken a glimpse at the Enriching Paws Instagram page you’ve probably seen that we’re a big fan of frozen enrichment meals all year around, but they are a particularly welcome addition on warm summer days. Wet food and raw food mixes often fit perfectly into food based enrichment toys like those sold by KONG, K9 Connectables or WestPaw but if your pet usually eats dry food that doesn’t mean they have to miss out! 

Harvey & Hudson often enjoy their dry food soaked in water, tossed in with some tasty sardines or mixed with blended berries and yogurt to help stick the kibbles together and make them the perfect toy filler. 

Are you and your pup new to canine enrichment? We have a ‘how to guide’ over on the Enriching Paws blog with our top tips for how to get started with your hound. 

Enrichment Snacks for Dogs

Looking for a smaller snack for your pet to enjoy in the summer? Ice creams and ice poles are a welcome treat on a hot day and so it makes sense that our dogs would enjoy them too! Commonly referred to as ‘pup-sicles’, dog owners across the UK have been getting creative with recipes and ideas for frozen treats that their pets can enjoy. 

We love the special ‘paw-sicle’ moulds from NoFussFill which create adorable paw shaped treats using your pets favourite treats and chews. Some of our favourite combinations included, home made fruit smoothies, yogurt, and peanut butter but the possibilities are really endless! Even if you don’t have a specific mould at home your pet can still enjoy their very own ‘pupsicle’ using a human icepole mould (make sure your pet doesn’t eat the plastic handle). If you don’t have a mould at home use a paper/plastic cup and stick in your dogs favourite chew to use as a special handle. For smaller dogs or light snacks for larger dogs even ice cube moulds can be a great option. 

Managing Calorie Intake for Dogs through Activities

It’s important to not increase our pets food intake too much during hot weather as they are often not exercising as much as they usually would meaning weight gain is more likely. Therefore finding activities and games they can play safely during warm weather is just as important.  

Paddling Pools and other water toys have been flooding into UK pet shops, they’ve grown rapidly in popularity and there are so many different toys and pools to try. Hudson will be the first to bark about just how great they are and he can often be found out in the garden prancing around with his favourite water based toys. 

However it is important to limit use and monitor your pet when enjoying any water activities as there are risks of ‘Water Intoxication’ an extremely dangerous and sometimes fatal condition caused by an excess intake of water which leads to imbalances in the blood and brain. Small dogs are more susceptible however high energy and excitable pets can also be high risk if they’re spending long periods of time in the water. 

While you shouldn’t let concerns stop your pet from enjoying water activities, as it’s a great way to stay cool, it is recommended that you ensure your pets take regular breaks from the water. Where possible use floating water toys to avoid your pet swallowing too much water when retrieving. If you’re worried your pet may be unwell after playing in the water always contact your vet immediately for advice and to ensure they get the best care. 

How are you and your pet staying cool this summer? We’d love to see! Tag us in your posts on Instagram or share your pictures on our Facebook page!

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