Pets and Summer Heat

by Tom Simplot

May 15, 2016

Arizona’s summer sun affects our bodies quickly. Meteorologists warn us every morning of the dangers of skin exposure to the sun and reporters share stories of hikers and the homeless struggling with heat exhaustion. Our pets suffer from the same issues when we take them out for long walks or playtimes in the heat.


For pet owners in apartments, the morning walk may need to be earlier, or we may need to add protection to pup’s paws. Place your hand on the sidewalk or parking lot. You will know in a few seconds if the cement will burn their paws. If it feels hot to you, it feels hot to them.


Plan for shorter walks and playtime outside. Dogs don’t know when to quit playing and will keep going, even if they are exhausted.


More ambitious hikers and runners really need to be careful with their pets in the summer. If it’s over 90 degrees, it might be time to leave your pet at home.


There’s nothing more tragic than having a pet become sick or even worse because of heat exhaustion. If you frequently take your dog on long hikes or runs in summer, be sure to get advice from the Arizona Humane Society or your vet before you go.


Summers can be tough for pets who need to stay inside for most of the day. When you can, take a drive and explore Arizona’s cooler cities with your pets. You’ll enjoy the outdoors with them and get in plenty of playtime.