Video: Best ways to keep your dogs cool during Sheffield summer heat, according to Thornberry Animal Sanctuary
and live on Freeview channel 276
Over the coming week, the Met Office has forecast an average daily temperature of 23C in Sheffield - but even on days we would not consider searingly hot, it could be for your beloved dog.
To help give Sheffield dog owners some useful advice, we sought out some of the tips and tricks used by the team at Thornberry Animal Sanctuary, who care for dozens of animals every day of the year.
To view the full interview, as well as some of the gorgeous dogs being cared for by the charity, check out the video above.
How to care for dogs in the heat
It’s still important to give dogs exercise, even when it’s hot. Kennel lead Keeley recommends walking dogs early in the morning or late in the evening when it’s cooler to reduce any risk of your dog suffering heatstroke, or burning their paws on hot pavements.
If you’re unsure whether the pavement is still too hot, James Gibson, a kennel assistant, gave one simple trick to test – simply place the back of your hand down on the ground for around 10-20 seconds. If it’s too hot for your hand – it’s too hot for dogs.
Use some pet or child-friendly sunscreen on the exposed parts of your pet’s skin, such as their ears and nose, to avoid sunburn. This is especially important if your dog has light-coloured or white fur as they can be particularly vulnerable to getting burnt.
To avoid your dog suffering heat-stroke, paddling pools, cooling mats or wet towels and ice-cubes in water can be used when out in the garden. Shade is also important to help them keep out of direct sun.
What are the signs of heatstroke?
Heatstroke can be a matter of life and death. You will know your dog best – if your dog is panting excessively, suffering with sickness or diarrhoea, avoiding food and drink, or it has collapsed, these can all be signs of heatstroke.
If you believe your dog is suffering heatstroke, follow the RSPCA’s emergency first aid guide, and take them to the nearest vet as a matter of urgency.