It's Getting Warmer! 7 Tips on Walking Your Dog in Summer

by Jamie Tedder on Feb 14, 2024


As the weather warms up and the day stretches longer, it's a great time to enjoy the outdoors and get more exercise with your dog. 

But as the summer season fast approaches, it's essential to take extra precautions to ensure a safe and comfortable stroll for your dog in the warmest season of the year. It turns out that providing your furry friend with a safe and hygienic indoor bathroom alternative, such as grass pee pads for dogs, is just one aspect of responsible pet ownership.

Is it Too Hot to Walk a Dog in Hot Weather?

Dogs thrive on routine, and taking them out for regular walks is essential for bathroom breaks as well as for keeping them active, healthy, and mentally stimulated.

However, dogs aren't necessarily built for the hot weather. In summer, it's necessary to consider the timing of your walks to protect your dog from heat-related issues such as heat stroke, dehydration, and paw pad burns.

We recommend scheduling walks during the cooler parts of the day—in the early morning or late evening when temperatures are lower and there's less risk of pavement burns. Additionally, avoid walking your dog during the warmest hours, usually between 10 am and 4 pm, when the pavements can become too hot for your dog's sensitive paws.


7 Tips to Safely Walk Your Dog on Hot Days

Before lacing up your trainers and leashing up your canine companion, read further for more tips on walking a dog in hot weather.

Always Bring Water

Dogs, like humans, need to stay hydrated, particularly on hot, humid days. But, unlike humans, our pets can't cool down as effectively, making hydration even more crucial. Always bring a water bottle and a dog bowl on walks, and offer your dog water breaks every 15-20 minutes. You can also carry a spray mist bottle or a wet towel to cool your dog down.

Check the Pavement Temperature

For many dogs, temperatures above 82°F can be dangerous for outdoor activities, while for some, even temperatures between 70°F and 77°F can be too hot. These conditions can put your dog at risk of heat stroke.

Before going for a walk, check the sidewalk by placing the back of your hand against the ground. If it's too hot to hold there for 5-10 seconds, then it's too hot for your pup's sensitive paws as well, risking burns. Wait until the ground cools down before venturing out for a walk.

Protect their Paws

Alternatively, you can walk on a grassy trail or protect your dog's paw pads with booties to reduce exposure to hot pavement. You can also apply paw balm, which acts as a protective barrier, shielding your dog's paw pads from burns and blisters.


Walk on Shaded Paths

Even better, plan your route to walk on shaded paths, avoiding direct exposure to sunlight. Shaded paths, such as those surrounded by trees and buildings, can provide relief from the scorching sun and help prevent overheating.

Take Frequent Breaks

During summer walks, allow your dog to take breaks and rest as needed to prevent overexertion. Learn to recognize your dog's cues—for example, lying on the grass helps them regulate their temperature. Keep an eye out for signs of overheating, such as drooling, excessive panting, stumbling, or bright red gums.

Use Sun Protection

Areas with thin fur or exposed skin in dogs, such as the nose and ears, are particularly vulnerable to sunburn. Protect these areas by applying sunscreen specifically formulated for dogs. Make sure to use sunscreen that is safe for pets to avoid any adverse reactions.

You can also consider giving your dog a trim to keep them cool in summer. However, be sure to leave at least an inch of fur to act as a natural barrier against the sun.

Watch for Signs of Heat Stroke

Dogs don't have sweat glands like humans. Instead, they rely on panting to cool themselves down. However, when their body overheats too quickly, they are at risk of heat stroke, which can be life-threatening. Some dogs are more susceptible to heat stroke, including senior dogs, breeds with shorter snouts, and obese dogs.

Look out for signs of heat stroke, such as difficulty in breathing, fever, gum discoloration, rapid pulse, weakness, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle tremors, dizziness, and lack of urine. If you suspect heat stroke, move your dog to a cool area, dose them with cool water, and seek veterinary attention immediately.


Bonus Tip: Stay Indoors

On particularly hot days, it's best to shorten your walks to reduce your time outdoors. Your dog will communicate when he's had enough, such as when he continues to lie down and pant. When this happens, head back indoors and enjoy some indoor time.

Sometimes, it's safer to skip outdoor walks altogether and create fun indoor activities to ensure your dog stays active and gets enough exercise. Set up indoor enrichment activities like puzzle toys and treat-dispensing toys to keep them mentally stimulated and entertained.

In these situations, you can also limit their bathroom breaks indoors by setting up an indoor grass pad for dogs. This bathroom solution offers several benefits, such as convenience, particularly during extreme weather conditions when outdoor walks are less than ideal.

Gotta Go Grass® pads for dogs are also a reliable solution for puppies during their house training or older dogs and those with limited mobility. For pet owners, it can help minimize the stress of having to rush your dog outside, especially in high-rise apartments or condominiums, for a bathroom break.



By prioritizing your dog's well-being and following these precautions, you can ensure that your summer walks with your dog are enjoyable and safe.

For more dog care tips and high-quality grass pads for dogs, visit the Gotta Go Grass® website today!

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