extra waterMay is around the corner, and that means three digit temperatures are fast approaching. Although the warm weather can be manageable for us, we tend to forget our pets can have a hard time adjusting to the summer season.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when enjoying the summer days with your furry friend to ensure both you and Fido stay happy and healthy.

Test the street before it touches their feet

Use the good ol’ hand test to see if the sidewalk or street is too hot for a walk. Lay the palm of your hand on the pavement and see if you can leave your hand there for more than five seconds. If you can, then Fido will be able to as well. If not, then the street is too hot and your pet’s feet are at risk for burns.

Remember just because the sun is setting does not mean the pavement has cooled off enough for your pet so when in doubt, always refer to the hand test.

Watch for dehydration in your pet

Dehydration can happen faster than you may realize once it starts to warm up outside, and the mile long walks you both are use to walking may be too much for your pet in the heat. Take extra notice to your pet’s behavior, looking for a tired pet, slowing down in pace, excessive panting, dry mouth and swollen tongue and gums, according to the Humane Society. Another test to try on your pet is the skin pinch test. Pinch some skin on your dogs back and if the skin immediately bounces back into place your pet is fine. If not, your pet is dehydrated. Take extra water bottles on walks to ensure you and your pet have H2O while on the go.

Provide shade for when your pet is outsidedog house

Being able to escape the sunlight is essential in helping your pet stay safe when outside in the heat. Also provide extra water, either in larger bowls or an automatic water bowl, and even consider getting a plastic kid pool. Having a pool of water for your pet to splash around in will help keep their body temperature cool while providing some play time. Just make sure your pet is capable of being safely left around water unattended.

Although the extremely hot weather we experience in Arizona can hinder outdoor activities, you and your pet can still enjoy some fun in the sun while staying safe and cool.