12 Summer Gear Essentials For Every Dog!
Worried about keeping your dog cool this summer?
In this article, we’ll look at 12 GEAR ESSENTIALS designed to help keep your dog comfortable and cool when temperatures begin to soar.
Heatstroke in dogs is no joke:
Once a dog’s core temperature rises beyond the normal 101.5 °F to over 105 °F, the risk of DEATH becomes very real.
And since our dogs will always try to please us and hide their discomfort, it’s our responsibility to make sure they’re protected from overheating.
Common sense tells us that we should keep our dogs in the shade, out of hot cars, off hot asphalt, and keep activity levels minimal when it’s hot, while offering plenty of water!
But what else can we do?
12 Gear Essentials For Beating The Summer Heat
1) Dog Cooling Mat ($40-$60)
These dog cooling mats and pads give your dog a cool spot to lay down and relax – without any additional effort from you.
Filled with a patented gel, these pads work without any need for electricity or refrigeration.
They’re pressure-activated! And automatically recharge.
You’ll find many variations available for sale on Amazon.com, but here are a couple of the top-reviewed models. You’ll see thousands of four- and five-star reviews on these cooling mats; dog owners rave about them.
They need to be spot cleaned, so that’s a consideration… But they’re lightweight and portable so great for travel, around the house, and in dog crates.
2) Elevated Dog Bed ($45-$50)
With their lifted, off-the-ground design, these elevated dog beds improve airflow on all sides of the bed, which helps keep your dog cool as he’s resting.
Plus—the suspended design is also excellent for elderly dogs who suffer from joint pain.
Easy to wipe clean and maintain, the lightweight yet sturdy design means they’re both durable and portable for both indoor and outdoor use.
Plus, it looks like the AmazonBasics version, featured first, can be purchased with replacement covers for roughly $10 (that would be important to me).
Or the elevated SHADE BED, which comes in a variety of sizes:
3) The Evaporative Cooling Vest ($60)
Dogs don’t sweat like humans… They pant, and they sweat through their feet, but that’s it.
So these cooling vets are designed to keep your dog’s body temperature down with a three-layer cooling system: The inside layer keeps your dog dry, the middle layer absorbs and stores water, and the outer layer reflections heat and promotes evaporation.
Hundreds of four- and five-star reviews from dog owners confirm that these vests really do work to keep dogs cooler.
4) Foldable & Portable Dog Pool ($37-$79)
Have you ever noticed that standing in cool water regulates your overall body temperature through your feet? It works the same for dogs, too. The only place dogs sweat is through their feet.
Dog pools are a portable, durable way to give your dog a place to cool off in your backyard.
Thick, slip-resistant PVC means it will stand up to regular use…
And it can even be a great place to BATH your dog during warmer summer days.
5) Outdoor Patio Misting & Cooling System ($28-$56)
If even the shaded areas of your yard or patio become insufferably hot, an outdoor patio misting system may be the answer – for both you and your dog.
These misting systems are designed to bring down the temperature of your outdoor spaces by as much as 30°F with cool misting technology.
6) Dog Water Fountains ($16-$24)
Dog water fountains are made to slowly dispense filtered water from a reservoir into a drinking bowl using gravity … making sure your dog has the water he needs while you’re out.
(These fountains can be especially good for dogs who are inclined to FLIP their water bowls! The extra weight helps prevent this.)
Plus—these systems typically come with antimicrobial protection that helps to prevent bacteria from growing in the base!
7) Traveling water bottle for dogs ($16.99)
If you’ve ever tried to pour a bottle of water into your dog’s mouth, or let your dog slurp water from your hands on the side of a road, you’ll appreciate the clever design of these portable canine water bottle/bowl combinations.
Perfect for walks, car travel, and more…
It’s a water bottle & bowl in one:
8) Collapsible Water/Food Bowl
I love that these bowls are lightweight and foldable … making them easy to carry in packs and double for a food AND water dish when you need it.
Plus, they’re dishwasher safe. Also a win. ?
9) Dog Crate Fan ($23)
Somebody was thinking! This cleverly designed fan is perfect for keeping crated dogs cool on hot days, with up to 100 hours of run time and ultra-quiet design.
10) Canine Rectal Thermometer For Emergencies (MUST-HAVE!)
If you don’t already have a rectal thermometer for your dog, I highly recommend grabbing one.
It’s an essential piece of safety equipment that should travel with you during the summer.
It can be difficult to assess your dog’s body temperature just by looking at him. A temperature of 101 °F to 102.5 °F is considered normal for a dog. Anything over 103 °F is considered high and you should call your vet immediately. Anything over 105°F is life-threatening.
(Remember that it’s important you don’t submerge an overheated dog in cold water or ice water, as this can cause blood vessels of the skin to constrict, which actually TRAPS the heat in your dog’s body instead of releasing it!)
A rectal thermometer empowers you to take an accurate reading of your dog’s temperature, on the spot.
There is a range of canine thermometers available, with prices from $7-$69, but here are a couple of affordable ones:
A Few Other Tips For Protecting Your Dog From The Sun
Dog sunscreen: Did you know that vets recommend dogs with exposed skin and/or white coats wear SUNSCREEN? Your dog’s nose is exposed skin is at risk of burning, too.
Some recommended canine-friendly sunscreens include:
Dog sunglasses: If your dog is on the water with you a lot, or enjoys the wind in his face while you’re driving, these dog goggles might be a good choice for you:
Finally, please remember that if you’re finding it HOT, your dog is, too...
Discourage active play during the heat of the day, and plan your walks during cool morning hours and in the later evening, before sunset.
Beware of hot pavement and asphalt… if it’s too hot for your bare feet, it’s too hot for your dog’s pads.
And must we say it? Never leave a dog in a car, even with the windows down.
Remember, the easiest way to accurately assess heat stroke is with a rectal thermometer.
Anything over 103 °F warrants a call to the vet.
Other signs that your dog is overheating include:
• Excessive panting
• Hypersalivation (drooling)
• Rapid heart rate
• Dry nose
• Pale gums/grey gums
If your dog is showing signs of overheating, move him to a cool, shaded area immediately, apply cool water to his body (without submerging him!), apply cool wet towels to his head and body, offer water to drink, and CALL YOUR VET!
Jennifer Boulet has spent more than 35 years in the world of dog obedience, professional show training, and breeding — and she strongly believes that every dog deserves the emotional, social, and physical health benefits that come from training. A trained dog… even better, a dog trained to do simple “jobs”… is a happy dog who knows his place in your life and home.