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How to protect your pet in a heatwave

Most of us love a hot summer, but extreme heat can be trickier for our furry companions who wear a permanent coat and have fewer ways to cool down. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can help to keep your best friend comfortable when the mercury rises.

1. Put out more water than usual

Make sure there are lots of bowls of water in places your pet has easy access too. For outdoor pets, it’s a good idea to put water some outside in a sheltered place. If it’s really hot, you might want to add a few ice cubes to the bowl.

2. Keep them sun-safe

Believe it or not, fair-furred, short-haired cats and dogs can get burnt if they are exposed to the sun for too long. Apply a pet-safe sunscreen, paying particular attention to places where fur is thinner, such as the ears.

3. Schedule walks for when it’s coolest

Avoid the midday sun and walk your dog during the morning and evening, when it’s cooler (more pleasant for you too!).

4. Create a cooling pad

Fill a hot water bottle with ice cold water, wrap it in a tea-towel and voila – a homemade cooling pad for your pet to snooze on if they’re feeling the heat.

5. A shady spot

If there are no cool, shady spots around your garden, it might be best to keep your pet indoors during the hottest hours of the day. A fan in a cool, quiet place will do an excellent job of making sure your furry friend doesn’t overheat.

6. Never, ever, ever leave your pet in the car

The temperature inside a vehicle rises extremely quickly, even if it doesn’t feel that warm outside. Never leave your pet in the car, even with the window cracked.