Fun in the Sun: Keeping Your Pet Active During the Summer Months
Summer is the perfect time to kick back, enjoy naps by the pool, and recharge. Without an agenda, we can idly drift between various relaxing endeavors. While your pet may be equally happy to indulge in the seasonal splendor, the reality is that the summer slide can have a negative impact on their endurance and day-to-day well-being. Of course, you want to pay close attention to the effects of the heat, but there’s truly no reason to ignore pet summer activities.
Keeping Up the Routine
One of the best ways to promote pet summer activities is to maintain your pet’s regular schedule. As creatures of habit, your pet will continue to enjoy meals and bathroom breaks at specific times.
Going one step further, set up exercise times that are managed consistently throughout the summer. You might be fond of midday runs during the winter season, but that approach is downright unsafe between May and September. Instead, switch your routine to the early morning or evening hours and be sure your pet is otherwise engaged in a cool, ventilated area in the afternoon. Your pet will adjust to this new seasonal routine, and will learn to anticipate what’s next.
A Word About Hydration
Pet summer activities are best enjoyed when everyone’s safety is the priority. Maintaining your pet’s hydration levels is vital to their ability to safely participate. Ideally, dogs receive a minimum ½ ounce of water per pound of body weight. You can adjust these values depending on energy output, temperature, wet food consumption, and relative comfort.
To ensure they are meeting their hydration needs, measure out how much water you put out for them throughout the day and compare it with any water levels left in their bowls.
Fun in the Sun
Once your pet’s safety is carefully considered and managed, we recommend jumping into any of these wonderful pet summer activities:
- Swimming (don’t forget to outfit your pet with a snug-fitting life jacket)
- Make frozen pet treats together
- Paddleboarding (again, water safety is critical!)
- Work on their sense of smell with a game of hide-n-seek
- Visit farmer’s markets
- Hang out on a boat or on a sandy beach
- Picnics under a shady tree
- Take an indoor dog training class
- Outdoor movies or concerts
- Bike rides (those cute little bike trailers are perfect for many dogs!)
- Run through the sprinklers together
- Snuggle up by AC for a movie night
- Have a fun photo shoot or attempt to paint their portrait
- Set up a pet painting session (non-toxic paint, please) and frame their paw-some works of art
Pet Summer Activities
As long as your pet’s health and safety remain central to your summer time fun, you can make some sweet memories. Please call us at (207) 729-4678 with any questions or concerns. From all of us at Androscoggin Animal Hospital, have a happy, safe summer!