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How To Protect Against Heat Stroke In Dogs

We’ve already told you what to do if your dog has a heat stroke. Now we’ve put together some simple steps you can take to proactively shield your dog from overheating this season.

And as a bonus, we list out why a Gunner Kennel is your best option when crating because the G1™ works for your dog in the heat too. Read on. 

Ten Tips To Keep Your Dog From Overheating

Photo by Aaron Davis | Southern Oak Kennels

1. Obviously the number one rule is to keep your dog hydrated with clean water, it’s a no brainer. On road trips stop regularly to make sure your pet has enough water, or bring along a collapsible bowl. And make sure it’s fresh– some dogs won’t drink something that’s been stagnant for long.

2. Do not leave your dog inside the car without good and proper airflow (and no that doesn’t mean a cracked window). Even in the shade, a car can be 10, 20, even 30 degrees hotter than it is outside: the sun coming through the glass can act like a cooker.  *We can’t believe we need to say this but… don’t put your kids in a kennel

3. If you’re leaving your dog outside, always make sure you provide shade for your dog, and show your dog where his/her (non-glass) water bowl is in that shade. Some breeds may be more susceptible to heat exhaustion – owners of pugs, boxers, bulldogs and even Cavalier King Charles Spaniel should be extra cautious. A good rule of thumb is to never tie your dog up anywhere for prolonged periods, but definitely never in the summer and/or blazing sun. 

4. There was information flying around a few years ago that ice is bad for your dog. Not true. Adding a few cubes – being mindful of the size so it’s not a choking hazard – only helps cool your pet down. On road trips, a couple frozen water bottles in the crate (if your dog doesn’t chew) isn’t a bad idea either.

5. Applying rubbing alcohol on your dog’s pads helps bring their temperature down. It cools as it evaporates, acting as a body cooling agent. So that’s a good item to pack in your car. Ice packs under the armpits also works, if you have a freezer stocked nearby.

6. Exercise your dog in the early morningor evening hours. Dogs cool off primarily through panting, not perspiring, so it takes longer to bring their temperature down than it does yours. The more you know…

7. If your dog has the capability to swim, it’s the best way to exercise in the heat.

8. Watch out for hot pavement. In the summer months it can badly burn your dog’s paw pads, and it’s a heightened source of heat. If you can’t leave your bare foot on the asphalt for longer than 10 seconds (just our recommendation… use your best judgment here), consider taking the dog out when it’s cooler.

9. Keeping your dog groomed and unmatted can help its natural cooling system. Check with your trainer or your vet before shaving your dog. If your dog spends a lot of time outdoors, cutting their coat down may be worth it. But coats can also offer a barrier between biting bugs, mosquitos and the sun – plus the undercoat of double-coated dogs actually helps with air flow across their skin. 

10. Finally, monitor your dog’s temperature when traveling if you are worried. Consider installing a wireless temperature sensor on the interior top of the crate that allows you to monitor the crate temperature on long trips. A good rule of thumb when measuring your dog’s temperature is that it shouldn’t be allowed to get over 104 degrees. See more heatstroke signs to watch for here.

Do you have additional tips for keeping your dog cool during the summer? Comment below to let us know.

5 Ways Gunner Kennels Protects In Heat

1. Proper ventilation and airflow was a major consideration when the G1™ was in development. More on that R&D process here.

2. Our kennel is double-wall rotomolded, and that extra layer of material actually helps block additional UV rays and humidity.

3. The rubber feet on our crates raises it off the ground, limiting heat transmission from surfaces like pavement and truck beds.

4. We conducted temperature tests on a hot day last summer using our kennel, and others crates in the market. Results are pretty incredible. See the video here.

BONUS Our G1™ Fan Kit accessory makes sure you’ve got proper airflow.

5 Ways Gunner Kennels Protects In Heat


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