How to Exercise your dog during the HOT summer
Summer brings a ton of fun for us with swimming, trips to the beach or lake, BBQ's and indoor (air conditioned!) places to visit. As a dog trainer, one thing I notice in the summer is people cut way back or stop walking or exercising their dogs outside. I get it...here in Arizona it is very, very hot 3-4 months of the year! Unfortunately, since our dogs often get less exercise during this time, we can see an increase in behavior issues. Here are some tips for beating the heat and finding ways to physically and mentally stimulate your dog.
1.Changing your walking route
Pavement and sidewalk can be super hot for our dogs to walk when it's warmer out. Find places that are grass areas such as open fields, walking trails, grass areas attached to a park, etc. These areas often have more shade options and grass is going to be way less hot to walk on.
2. Switch out their food bowls for enrichment items
This is something I recommend to dog guardians ALL year, but especially in the summer. There are tons of easy and inexpensive ways to feed your dog that involve them problem solving and using their brain. Check out my enrichment file below for awesome ideas!
Don't underestimate how satisfying training is for our dogs. Working their brains is important and meets their needs! Spending 5-10 mins, 1-2 times a day is a good routine.
4. Kiddie pools
Having areas your dog can cool off or turning the pool into a fun game is a great way to add in some physical exercise outside when it's hot! Fill the kiddie pool with a small amount of water (just cover the bottom) and toss some of your dogs favorite treats in for them to find and eat. Slowly add more water if your dog is comfortable and also toys for them to find and play.