Summer Heat and Dog Paws

With summer upon us, it might seem like there's no better time to take our dogs out for a nice walk and play in the sunshine. However with the hot weather, comes some associated dangers.

While most of us know about heat stroke and keeping your dog cool, something that tends to be forgotten is paw pad burns, that result from walking on a scorching footpath or sand. While the pads on dog's feet may feel hard, they are very sensitive and extremely susceptible to being burnt. Even in the shade or later in the afternoon, the residual heat on some surfaces can still be hot enough to cause damage.

Paw pad burns are extremely painful, and the pads can quickly blister leading to possible infection. A quick and easy way to test if a surface is too hot for your dog to walk on, is to place the back of your hand directly on it. If you can't stand to keep your hand on there for longer than just a few seconds, then chances are neither will your pooch.

If you suspect your dog's paw pads have been burnt, the best thing to do is to call your vet and we can assess what treatment may be needed. This could include pain relief, bandaging, ointments or antibiotics, which your vet will decide based on the severity of the burns.

So remember, while we still want you and your furry friend to enjoy the summertime sunshine, make sure you keep it to a short walk if in the middle of the day, walk on grassy surfaces, and don't forget to do the 'back of the hand' test, and if it's too hot for you, then it's too hot for your dog.