Five alternative top tips to keep your canine cool
PUBLISHED: 10:30 26 July 2018 | UPDATED: 10:40 26 July 2018
With the UK’s heatwave set to continue into the weekend and beyond Norfolk is really feeling the heat.
But it is not just humans who are affected by the heat, as dogs can become increasingly bored and frustrated in warm weather.
When going for a walk is not an option dogs can become frustrated with all the pent-up energy they would normally burn off during playtime.
Here are some of Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, top tips for helping dogs have fun safely this summer.
•Mental exercise can be just as tiring as physical exercise, so doing some brain training will help prevent a dog getting bored and restless. Tricks like teaching a dog to touch a hand with their nose or teaching a dog to focus their attention fully on someone can keep them occupied.
•Playing indoors can be a great alternative to outdoor fun. Make sure to supervise and ensure it is not too high intensity and take regular breaks to ensure the dog keeps cool. An example is hiding toys and getting dogs to search for them.
•Make the most of feeding time and include some indoor foraging opportunities for any four-legged friend that uses their brains rather than their bodies. Lay out treat trails around the house for them to find, use puzzle-feeders or get creative and make food games.
•When recycling keep anything that is safe for a dog to use as part of a fun food game – think treats hidden within scrunched up newspapers inside a cardboard box, or empty plastic bottles, lids removed, with treats inside. Remember to supervise in case a dog needs help.
•Paddling pools in gardens can be fun but need to be introduced carefully and ensure owners are there to keep an eye on any mischief. Plastic ones that are not too deep are best as they should not burst. Place in the shade and encourage doga to paddle with some treats.
Dogs Trust Snetterton’s Rehoming Centre manager Diane McLelland-Taylor says: “Having fun with your dog is one of the biggest and most important parts of dog ownership – so why should a little bit of sun spoil all the fun?
“Enrichment is a key part of ensuring our dogs are stimulated and happy, but in warm weather it can be tricky to do this safely.
“It’s important to remember that dogs won’t necessarily know if they are overheating and might continue to play and dash about in hot temperatures, because they might have such a strong desire to play.
“So just because a dog is chasing a ball and bringing it back, this doesn’t mean their body is physically coping with this activity, and they might be likely to overheat.”