Summer survival guide
mel Stones, founder of Animal Action uAe, shares her tips on keeping your animals healthy and safe
EMBRACE AIR-CON Keep your animal inside an air-conditioned area. Dozens of dogs die each summer in the UAE from heatstroke. With temperatures reaching up to 50°C, few animals can withstand being kept outside in the sweltering heat. Cold weather dogs, like huskies, are at particular risk. Make sure your pet has access to an air-conditioned space, out of direct drafts, at all times. Know the signs of heatstroke and keep an eye out for them.
LAP IT UP Make sure your pet has plenty of access to fresh water. They may drink more than usual due to the hot weather. Keep an eye on water bowls and ensure they never run dry. If you are leaving the house for any length of time you may want to put an extra bowl down to be safe.
TAKE IT EASY Like humans, animals may have less energy during the summer months. Never try to push them beyond their limits and understand that they may want to doze more. This is particularly important for older animals and pets with any medical conditions, such as heart disease or obesity.
GO FOR A STROLL Walk your dog in the early morning and late at night, out of the main heat and glare, and always take water for a dog to drink enroute. Many pet shops sell heatproof booties to protect your pet’s sensitive footpads from burning on the concrete and sand. You couldn’t walk barefoot on those surfaces in the summer so why expect them to?
USE COMMON SENSE This goes without saying but you should never, ever, leave an animal in your car without the air-conditioning on. A dog behind glass in a car can die from heatstroke within ten to 15 minutes – the time you take to pop into the shop and back.
HAVE A PADDLE If you have a garden or a balcony, buy a small paddling pool from a pet store to put in the shade and create a cool down bath. Your pet will thank you.
THINK AHEAD If you are travelling, book your kennel or cattery stay early. Closer to the summer places fill up, so plan accordingly.