This 5 Second Trick Can Save Your Dog's Paws This Summer

Summertime is all about having fun in the sun. It’s also the one time of the year it's considered acceptable to step out in your bare feet - or so I'm told. On a cool day, the gentle warming sensation from the hot pavement below the bottom of your feet can be quite soothing, but it can go from relaxing to burning hot real quick. 

If the ground is too hot for your human feet, it’s definitely too hot for your canine friend’s feet, too. While a human can easily slip on some shoes for protection from the sizzling ground, our dogs cannot. Dogs love to frolic outside, but in these blazing temperatures, it’s important to protect our precious pooches from dangerously hot surfaces. 

East Bay SPCA Veterinary

While the thermostat might report comfortable temperatures outside, pavement surfaces are a significantly different matter. In the video below, one dog owner demonstrates the stark contrast between the outside air temperature and the temperature of the surfaces we walk on. Armed with a compact infrared thermometer, the YouTuber records the temperatures of different points in a parking lot. While the air temperature is only 80 degrees, the ground ranges anywhere from 90 to a whopping 113 degrees. Those temperatures are not high enough to damage ole Bear's feet, but they certainly won't be enjoyable for him - or anyone else.

According to Pet Sitters, at 140 degrees, pavement will cause permanent damage to your dog’s paws in only one minute. Just 10 degrees hotter, and your pup’s feet will burn and blister on contact. Poor Fido's daily walk would go from refreshing to torturous.

We love our dogs, so we need to take care of them. While many pet stores sell protective booties and socks for dogs, many can’t stand the feel of them. That's why Moon Valley Canine Training devised this useful, quick trick that can help you figure out if the pavement is too hot for your pooch. Before you take your dog outside, use the back of your hand to test the surface temperature. Let the back of your hand rest on the pavement for five seconds. Just like testing a baby’s bathwater, if the surface hurts, it’s unsafe for your dog.

Besides the hand test, experts recommend regularly moisturizing your dog’s paws and taking walks during the cooler hours of the day. The best time to go for a walk is in the early morning or around dusk. Always try to stay in shaded areas, and walk on the grass as opposed to exposed pavement.

These tips will keep you, and your dog's paws, happy and healthy.

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H/T: Sun Gazing

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