If you are taking your dog away with you this summer on a Static Caravan holiday, please remember that unlike humans, dogs can’t perspire. In hot weather you will probably have noted your dog panting a lot which is the way a dog keeps cool.
In high temperatures dogs can quickly become dehydrated especially if they are black or dark coated, since dark colours absorb much more heat than light ones. Young puppies, old and overweight dogs are also at more risk.
Symptoms vary but if you notice any or all of the following dehydration may be the cause:
- Lack of appetite
- Bloodshot eyes
- Loss of skin elasticity
- Excessive urination of drooling
- Loss of skin elasticity
Here are some guidelines to avoid having to make a trip to the vet unless the symptoms persist:
Don’t leave your dog alone – most people are aware, because of media attention, that dogs should not be left in cars when the weather is hot but often forget that a Static Caravan can also become unbearably hot when closed up. Leaving your dog in the caravan when you go out is no different to leaving a dog in a car. Naturally it is possible to cool down the caravan by closing curtains and blinds but it’s still not worth taking the risk of leaving your dog alone.
Lots of water – ensure that there are full bowls of fresh cold water available at all times. Your dog will appreciate the addition of a few ice cubes too! Place the bowls in any places your dog is likely to frequent and if you are going out for a walk with the dog, take some bottled water with you.
Walking times – in hot weather the coolest times of the day are in the early morning and late evening so walk your dog when it is cooler. The middle of the day is the hottest so avoid walking at around noon because it’s not only hot on their coats but also on their paws.
Damp towels and water sprays – if dogs are hot they like nothing better than being sprayed with cool water all over their bodies. Spraying water on their beds if they are flat beds or laying out a damp towel for them to lie on will also keep them cooler.
Paddling pool – young children love paddling pools but even if you don’t have any it’s a great idea to have one for your dog. When you dog is panting a lot encourage him or her to get into the pool to cool down. Alternatively you may be able to find a pool that allows dogs.
Food – humans don’t eat as much in high temperatures and neither do dogs. Keep an eye on how much your dog eats but don’t worry too much unless there is a prolonged lack of appetite, in which case you might want to consult a vet.
Throw away any food that your dog decides not to eat since it will go off fairly quickly and you don’t want to risk a stomach upset if your pet chooses to eat it later.
Dogs won’t play as much and will lack energy in the heat much the same has humans but again, if the lethargy is prolonged and you are concerned about it, see a vet just to check that nothing is wrong.
Bear in mind that pets can become snappy and bad tempered if they are over heated, just like us, so if there are kids around make sure they don’t try to pet your dog excessively.
Check the Caravan Holiday Park is pet friendly
Before booking your Static Caravan holiday make sure that the park you have chosen accepts pets. On Rent My Caravan you will find a wide selection of holiday homes throughout the UK, which you can book direct with owners. Most caravan owners’ pages contain comprehensive information but do ask questions if you are in doubt about anything.