Summer is a time for play, beach time, hiking, and long sunny days – keep it carefree by keeping your dog safe.

Dogs usually love summer and so do we! More outdoor time, long days, sunshine and just a general feeling of wellbeing are some of the benefits of this season. Thoughts of camping, hiking, BBQs and good times spring to mind as summer approaches in the northern hemisphere.

As a dog owner, it’s time to think about potential hazards too. Unfortunately, extra dangers and pests come along with the warmer weather and it’s good to be prepared. We all want our canine companions to be healthy and fit to enjoy the season by our side.

Summer safety tips for dogs

1. Never leave your dog in a hot car

This dog safety tip is well documented in the media and most dog owners know never to do this. But it’s worth repeating because it’s so important. Do not leave your dog in the car in warm temperatures – it can be fatal. Heatstroke can be severe and lead to death. Symptoms are drooling, panting, fever and fast heartbeat: get your dog into cold water and to a vet immediately if you notice these.

2. Make sure your dog has shade and fresh water 

Plan walks and trips carefully in summer months. Make sure you always have a fresh supply of water for your fur buddy and don’t rely on natural sources. Some fresh water can come with its own set of woes in the form of algae or parasites. If you’re at home on a hot day, giving your pup some ice cubes could be a nice cooling treat. Always make sure they have shade nearby.

3. Don’t walk your dog on hot pavements

Pavements can get really hot in summer – don’t let your dog burn their paws. If you live in a hot place, go out walking earlier or later in the day when it’s cooler. Or, you can drive to a place where there is grass or other cooler surface for walking your doggie. 

4. Regular grooming is a good idea

Grooming your dog can be especially nice in summer for them as it thins their coat, cooling them down. Another excellent reason it’s good is that you can pinpoint any pests such as ticks, that they may have picked up.

5. Be aware of local hazards 

Check your local area where you walk your dog. Your regular walks in winter could be very different in summertime. Find out if there are hazards like jellyfish, snakes, ticks, or other pests that you need to be aware of. Take the appropriate precautions and ask your vet if you’re unsure what to do.

6. Go see the vet for a check up

With the change of the season it’s always worthwhile going to the vet for a quick check up. Make sure all vaccinations and treatments are up to date and just ask their advice about what to watch out for over the coming months as they will have the best local knowledge.

7. Be aware of toxins

Summer is also a time when people tend to get busy in the garden, and on farms. Be super vigilant about any pesticides you use and make sure they aren’t toxic for doggie. It’s also worth thinking about where you’re walking with your dog – if it’s near or on farmland, try to keep them away from areas that could be sprayed. 

8. Keep a close eye on your dog at the BBQ

As we know, not all human food is good for dogs. It’s so tempting for pooches to mooch for titbits at a BBQ or summer party. Be strong and resist their puppy eyes! Xylitol, a sweetener, can be especially bad for pups and keep them away from alcohol at all times.

9. Protect your dog from the sun

Dogs can get sunburnt, just like humans. If you think your doggie could be exposed to strong sunlight, consider getting some dog sunscreen. As mentioned earlier, always make sure they have a shaded area available to them.

10. Be vigilant around water

Not all dogs like water and may be in danger of drowning if left unattended. If your dog does enjoy a dip, make sure they’re safe from the changing tides and currents. Having a kiddie pool in the garden can be a nice, safe option for cooling down in really hot temperatures.

Have fun in the sun this summer! Take onboard these summer safety tips for dogs and it’ll be as joyous and carefree as you hoped it would be!

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About the author

Vaila Erin is a writer, lover of animals, and a bit of a nomad. For her, life is about stories — observing yourself and others so that you can laugh, cry and entertain each other with its absurdities. Connect with her at or via LinkedIn.