Summer is right around the corner, and as the weather heats up, many people will be headed to the beach to cool off. You can have a fun-filled day with your pup as long as you do a little extra planning. To help owners have the best beach experience possible with their dogs, the American Kennel Club offers the following safety tips:
- Bring plenty of water. Be sure to bring plenty of fresh water for your dog to keep him well hydrated and prevent him from drinking the ocean water. The high sodium content in the water, along with other contaminants, can be harmful to your dog's health. Having fresh water on hand will keep him hydrated and cool and decrease his chance of getting sick.
- Provide shade. If you plan to be at the beach for an extended period of time, be sure to have an umbrella with you. This will ensure your dog has a place to get out of the sun and rest.
- Use sunscreen. Dogs that are hairless or have a short or light-colored coat are especially susceptible to sunburn. It is always wise to apply a dog-friendly sunblock to make sure your four-legged friend is protected from the harmful rays of the sun.
- Consider taking your dog swimming. Many dogs like swimming, but the old belief "all dogs can swim" is a myth. Start slowly in shallow water, or with you nearby to give the dog support. You can also begin training with a life vest and then fade it out once your dog is a confident swimmer.
- Rinse off. Rinse your dog off as soon as he is done playing, whether in the ocean, a pool, lake or river. Chlorine can irritate skin and eyes, and the bacteria from lakes or rivers can make your pet sick. Make sure to rinse or shampoo your dog's coat. Don't forget to take special care to dry out his ears as well to prevent infection.
For more tips on dog ownership, visit the AKC at www.akc.org.(c)2020 American Kennel Club, Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.