While many of your readers will undoubtedly be enjoying the seemingly never ending good weather, I wanted to remind pet owners about the change in care required for our four-legged friends as forecasters predict another wave of high temperatures. I am particularly concerned about the brachycephalic breeds such as pugs, French bulldogs, bulldogs and Boston terrier to name just a few. I’ve seen some very distressed dogs and the hot weather is sure to cause extra difficulties for them. It’s always important to ensure there is a plentiful supply of water available to pets but this is even more important during spells of hot weather. Keep a number of full water bowls available throughout various points of your house and garden to ensure your pet has constant access. Walking pets during sunny spells can often spark a heated debate, as people discuss the exercise needs of their pets versus the risk of walking in the heat. If the heat is uncomfortable for you, it’s definitely going to be uncomfortable for your pet. Change your walking routine by taking them out early in the morning or later in the evening, avoiding the middle of the day when the sun is at its hottest. Try visiting locations that offer areas of shade and places for pooches to cool off. It might surprise readers to know that dogs, like us, can suffer from heatstroke. Symptoms can include excessive panting and drooling. Dogs suffering from heatstroke need to be cooled down gradually, so avoid ice cubes and freezing water. Instead let them lie down on a wet, cool towel or a cooling mat, and keep on eye on them should their symptoms worsen. Enjoy the lovely weather with your furry friends but remember to exercise caution with them over the summer.

John Burns

Founder of Burns Pet

Nutrition and Veterinary Surgeon