Ten Tips to Keep Your Pets Cool for The Summer

As the summer months lazily pass us by and the temperature heats up, RSPCA have released their best advice on how to keep your pets cool. Whether they be Dogs, Cats, Rabbits or Horses they have simple tips to suit all. While a British summer may not experience the same heatwaves as those in the Med, we are, as a result, not always prepared for dealing with the heat. Therefore here are RSPCA's top ten tips to help you keep your precious pets chilled and comfortable for when those hot days do come around.

1. If your pet has white fur make sure to use pet safe sun-cream, particularly on the tips of their ears, a sensitive area which can easily get sunburn the same way as us humans.  

2. Fish can get hot too! In order to protect your fish from overheating tanks should be kept out of direct sunlight.

3. Get creative! Freeze your dogs water bowl or kong before putting water or treats in them to keep them cool for longer periods of time. The same way you would freeze a glass before pouring a beer. Also adding ice cubes to water bowls is another good technique. Refrigerating treats is also helpful and can be applied for all animal feed from carrots for horses to dog treats. 

4. Wrap an ice pack from the freezer in a tea towel for your dog or cat to rest on. Alternatively you can put damp towels in the freezer if an ice pack is not available.  

5. You may have noticed your pet prefers to lie on tiled surfaces more as they are cooler. A cooling mat can provide a retreat to help your pet cool down. 

6. Put bottles of frozen water wrapped in a towel in Rabbit and Guinea Pig enclosures for them to lie next to. Ensure there is a shady patch in the exercise area always available throughout the day. Rabbits are more susceptible to fly-strike in the summer so be sure to check them regularly.

7. Make an ice lolly from pet friendly ingredients, recipes of which can be found online but usually includes pureed fruit and veg or water with herbs or frozen herbal tea. If in doubt ask your vet. 

8. If your dog enjoys water, use a paddling pool, hose or sprinkler to allow them to soak and cool down.

9. Pets may struggle to realise when they are too hot so make sure they have constant access to shade, and don't over exercise them. Do not house any animal in direct sunlight. 

10. Give your Dog a piece of cold apple or cucumber to eat for added moisture. Water bobbing for fruit and veg is also an excellent game for Horses and Donkeys to enjoy, providing fun for all and a way to keep cool. 

Erin McCaffrey