Protecting your pets from the scorching heat

ROANOKE, Va. – The sun is out, and the heat is coming in, but one thing you need to keep in mind is keeping your furry best friends safe in the summer sun.

“Try to plan those times for early in the morning or late in the evening, the coolest parts of the day. Keep them in the grass, not on asphalt or on the pavement where their paws can just get scorched,” Julie Rickmond, Marketing and Communications Director for RVSPCA, said.

If you can only take your dog out when it’s super-hot, the Roanoke Valley SPCA said to take them to the restroom quickly and have play time inside.

“Puzzle feeders and puzzle mats even when they are eating can help them sort of be more engaged,” Rickmond said.

Make sure you know what heat exhaustion in pets looks like, too.

“Excessive panting, difficulty breathing, increased heart rate or respiratory rate, drooling, weakness or lethargy, including and up to seizures and collapse, can be part of overheating in pets,” she said.

The scorching pavement can easily turn bad fast and could burn the dog’s paw pads.

A good rule to follow when walking your dog is to check the pavement with your hand, hold your hand against the pavement for 5 to 10 seconds and if it’s too hot to hold it there, it’s too hot for your dog to be walking on it.

The easiest way to cool your dog down is from the inside out, always have fresh clean water available and maybe even a cold sweet treat!

“A dog can have access to a pupsicle it’s like a frozen treat,” she said.

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