Make the most of summer with your dog

Check out our Q&A for helping your four-legged friend through hot weather, hayfever and more

When the sun is shining and the days are longer, there’s even more possibility of fun with your four-legged friend. But with the warmer weather comes an extra responsibility to take care of your pet dog. Find out all about how to stop sunburn, tackling doggy hayfever sniffles, safety tips around summer barbeques and more…

What precautions do I need to take exercising my dog in hot weather?

Firstly it’s important to remember not to exercise your dog excessively in hot weather. Try to schedule your walk for first thing in the morning or once the sun has gone down a little. By this time hot pavements and road surfaces (which can burn a dog’s delicate paws) should have cooled down. Always carry a good supply of drinking water with you wherever you go to keep your dog hydrated – you can find doggy drinking bottles in pet stores and online. Try to pick somewhere with shade as your exercise spot. And remember that dogs can get sunburned just like humans, Ask your vet for advice on pet-safe sunscreen.

What’s the advice for dogs around barbeques?

Barbeques are fun for the whole family. But those cooking coals get incredibly hot. Keep your pet away from the heat and particularly watch out for any food remnants stuck to the grill that your pet might try to reach for. Try to avoid feeding your dog the barbeque scraps as these could affect his or her stomach. Make sure any leftovers are safely binned out of reach and that you keep his bowl topped up with his regular IAMS or Eukanuba food to keep him well fed and less likely to go searching for the leftovers.

Do dogs suffer from hayfever?

Yes, it's not only humans that can suffer from hayfever  - your pets can be affected by it too. Symptoms include weeping or inflamed/red eyes, licking paws and more than usual scratching or biting themselves while grooming and trying to shake their head or rub it against furniture. If you suspect your pet is suffering from hayfever there are certain things you can do. If your dog loves bouncing into flowerbeds or gamboling in the grass, keep them on a lead to try and minimise pollen sticking to their fur. When you come home from a walk, wipe your dog’s paws and face to remove any pollen (ask your vet about specialist wipes). Bath your dog weekly to get rid of any pollen, wash bedding regularly and keep hair trimmed. If your dog is really suffering, speak to your vet about treatments.

My dog loves to swim. Are there any problems with letting him hit rivers and lakes in the summer?

Avoid anywhere with a strong current or where your dog could get out of this depth. Look over any water first to check for rubbish in it that might harm your dog and stay away from stagnant ponds, as the algae can be toxic to dogs.

More dog summer fun

Get more tips on making the most of holidays with your pet.