Some like it hot and our beloved pugs are no different! I will often find my curly tailed friend basking in the sun, soaking up the rays like a teenager enjoying their summer vacation. While he could not be any happier, I often have to disrupt these tanning sessions to cool him down. As a responsible pug owner, it is my job to understand that the same brachycephalic features that make our breed so unique and lovable pose a threat when the strong sun and heat roll in. From Texas to Massachusetts, indoors to outdoors – here are some “rules of the paw” to help keep your pug cool and comfortable in the heat.
- Educate yourself on heat stroke (hyperthermia). Symptoms can vary from excessive panting to confusion, rapid pulse, weakness, vomiting, and bright tongue/pale gums. If you notice any of these symptoms, act immediately! It is imperative to get your pug to a cooler environment and call your vet immediately.
- Never ever leave your pug in a car. This is a rule that should be followed year-round, regardless of temperature and circumstance.
- Fresh water! It is imperative your pugs have access to fresh water and an abundance of it throughout the summer months. Heading out in the heat? Bring a water bottle with you.
- Some days it’s just too hot for walks. If you are unable to leave your bare hand on the pavement for seven seconds, hold off on the walk. If your furry friend is panting before the walk even begins, skip the walk altogether. A walk outside is not the only outlet for exercise; think about tossing their favorite toy around inside or creating an obstacle course in order for your pup to find their dinner. If you have a treadmill that has been collecting more dust than miles, give this a shot! Start out slow and allow a few days for your pug to get acclimated. Stand in the front of the machine with a treat to encourage their hard work.
- What about swimming? Not many pugs have mastered the back stroke, however, a small kiddie pool (hard not inflatable) filled with fresh water can provide a simple oasis for your pug, keeping them cool and providing some summer fun.
- My summer go-to has always been a cool coat. With many different brands and styles (available through KVsupply or your local pet store), this simple product is a no-brainer for the summer months. While some require refrigeration, others are designed to absorb a pet’s body heat with no additional measures.