A Voice from the Eastern Door

The Dog Days of Summer

By Jennifer Herne, LVT

What exactly does that mean? In the summer, Sirius, the "dog star," rises and sets with the sun. During late July, Sirius is in conjunction with the sun, and the ancients believed that its heat added to the heat of the sun, creating a stretch of hot and sultry weather. They named this period of time, from 20 days before the conjunction to 20 days after, "dog days" after the dog star.

We are in the dog days of summer from early July to early September, and yes it is very hot! It is important to keep your dog cool. Some of the things you can do are keep them inside in air conditioning. Ensure they have access to fresh cool water at all times, water left out all day can get stale. If you can't keep your dog indoors, make sure he has a shaded area to be in. You should also make sure that the dog house is properly built, some dog houses actually act like a sauna and keep the heat inside the house instead of providing a cool retreat for your pet. Another fun thing to do for you dog is to make some "pup-sicles". You can use beef broth and add some of your dog's favorite treats to the broth in a dish and pop it into the freezer overnight. Your dog will have a great time chewing and licking the pup-sicle and finding treats. Another way to keep your dog cool is a pool to swim in. You can purchase a plastic kiddie pool and fill it with water and some of your dog's favorite dog toys to play with.

The last tip for avoiding the heat, don't leave your pet in a hot car. The temperature in a car is a lot higher than the temperature outside, so leave Fido at home.

I hope you have a safe and fun summer with your dog.


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