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Summer Care for Senior Dogs

July 15 2019

Summer is many of our canine patients’ favorite time of year. Fido gets to roll around, play, sniff new grass, and soak up some sun. Heat can be dangerous for Man’s Best Friend, however. As your furry pal ages, he’ll become even more sensitive to hot weather. In this article, a McHenry, IL vet discusses summer care for older dogs.


Heat is the main concern for senior pets at this time of year. Make sure Fido always has shade and water. You may want to get an automated waterer or a pet fountain. If you have a yard, but no tree or doghouse to provide shade, hang a tarp up.


Keep Fido indoors during the hottest parts of the day. Walk and play with him in the morning and evening, when it’s cooler out. Also, try to avoid taking your canine buddy from cool to hot temperatures too rapidly or too often.


Senior dogs need regular activity to stay healthy. Summer evenings are a perfect time to enjoy a slow, relaxing strolls with your loyal furry friend!

Paw Care

Keep Fido’s nails clipped! If his claws are too long, he may adjust his gait to compensate, which is bad for his bones and joints. Also, keep your dog on grass as much as possible. If you do bring him onto tar or asphalt, use paw balm to protect his feet.


Nothing gets that tail going like a yummy treat! Doggy ice cream, chilled sodium-free broth, or a thin slice of frozen lamb roll are all good snacks.


Offer Fido a cool, comfy spot to nap. Raised beds are a good choice. They allow air to flow beneath them, which keeps them cooler. You can also put a cold towel or cold pack on your pup’s bed.

Cool Clothes

Did you know that you can get cooling jackets for your dog? You can also soak a bandana in water and freeze it, then tie it around Fido’s neck. Damp towels can also keep your pooch cool.


Swimming can be a great workout for Fido! The water will support your dog’s weight, so it’s easy on his bones and joints. Just supervise your canine companion closely while he’s in or near water.

Please contact us, your McHenry, IL vet clinic, if ever we can be of assistance. We’re happy to help!