Do you know a senior who has a pet? Summer is here and it’s the perfect time for them to plan relaxing time outside with their four-legged friends! And while fun in the sun is great, here are 5 ways to help keep their feline and fido comfy in these record hot temperatures.

 

• Make sure your four-legged friend has constant access to water.

Keep water in the shade and make sure it is fresh every day. If your pets will be outside, secure the water dish to avoid an accidental spill that would leave them without water. If possible, have an on demand water dispenser available.

• Tend to their coat.

Good grooming is important for your pet’s health; particularly in the summer. Speak to your groomer or veterinarian to find out what is best for your pet. A full shave may not be the answer, depending on your pet’s coat/breed, but make sure you brush them regularly to avoid matted coats that hold heat.

• Change your walking/exercise time.

Although mid-day jogs and 4pm walks sound great, during the summer its best to change your outdoor time with your pets. Consider early morning or late afternoon outside time or limit the amount of time you play outside in high heat. Also bring plenty of water along for both you and your pet!

• Ouch! The ground is hot. Cover their paws.

If your cat or dog HAS to stay outside during the summer, you can buy booties to keep their paws cool. Keep this in mind: If the ground is too hot for you to walk barefoot on it, it’s too hot for your pet. You can find these at your local pet supply store. These booties can also be used in the winter if you’re anticipating snow days.

• NEVER leave your pet in the car under any circumstance.

One of the deadliest heat hazards for pets is the elevated temperature experienced inside our cars. Never leave your pet in a non-climate controlled car, even on what feels to be a cool day. A Stanford University Medical Center study determined that the temperature inside a vehicle can increase by an average of 40 degrees Fahrenheit within 60 minutes. The hotter your car becomes, the more uncomfortable your pet will be.

We love our pets, and so do our seniors who are part of our aniMeals on wheels program. The program was founded so that homebound seniors on Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston’s Meals on Wheels program would not have to share their food or limited resources with their pets. To find out more about the program, click here.