by Doris Donnerman
(last updated November 13, 2009)
The summer is always a fun time to be outside and play around. Especially for kids, playing with the family dog outside is always a fun and exciting way to spend the afternoon. When you or your kids play outside however, and walk around running errands, or whatnot, you have shoes on. Shoes are there to protect our feet and make it so that we can basically go anywhere at anytime. We do have shoes for specific times of the year and for different weather, but we do have shoes. Our pets do not have that luxury, and so we need to keep that in mind during the summer when we're out playing with our pets.
We all know that feeling of walking barefoot on a sidewalk or piece of asphalt. It hurts. You usually end up hopping around until your feet find a pair of shoes, some grass, or really anywhere that provides respite from the searing heat of the ground. While your dog's feet may be a little more hardy than yours, you still need to recognize that heat hurts your dog's feet, and that you need to be considerate of that fact. It goes beyond consideration however, and into simple pet owner responsibility. You need to protect your dog, and during the summer that entails protecting your dog's feet from the summer heat.
Yes, you need to walk your dog, but don't do it in the middle of the day. Walk your dog in the early morning when you take your morning run, or later in the evening when the air and ground begin to cool down a bit. If you have to have your dog outside with you, keep it in the shade as much as possible, or if you need to walk it in the middle of the day, go somewhere like a park where there is shade, and where your dog can sooth its feet by walking on some grass. You need to keep in mind that if you have your dog walk on hot asphalt or pavement too much then its paws will burn and your dog could risk becoming overheated.
It's fine for your dog to be and play outside with you, but there are plenty of opportunities for your dog to be outside and not on pavement or asphalt. Grass is the best place for your pet to be when outside, and you can really have a fun time with your pet when you remember that!
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