Beat the Heat: Paw Protection Tips and Tricks
As outdoor temperatures rise, your pet’s paw pads are at risk of serious burns. In fact, once air temps reach a toasty 85 degrees Fahrenheit, concrete is at a sizzling 105 while asphalt is at 130 degrees, both of which are more than hot enough to burn sensitive paws. That doesn’t mean you have to skip the outings all summer long, however. Just make sure to do the following things to beat the heat and protect your pet’s paws.
Check Pavement Temps — Every Time
Whether you’re heading out on a quick walk or going to the park, take the time to check pavement temps every time you go out with your pet. All you have to do is lightly press the back of your hand against the pavement for a seven-second count.
If it’s too hot to leave your hand there the whole time, then the surface is too hot for paws to walk on without protection. Stick to the grass instead, if possible, or go for a walk at a cooler time of the day. Early mornings and late nights are great for walks around the neighborhood on the hottest days of the year.
Train Your Pet to Love Their Boots
If you train your dog to wear rubber-soled booties, you never have to worry about pavement temps. In addition to protecting from the heat, dog shoes can protect the paws from cuts, abrasions, and other injuries.
There are many different styles of dog shoes to consider, such as:
- Waterproof boots
- Converse-style lace-ups
- PVC buckle sandals
The best protective footwear has a rubber sole and fits your dog well without chafing or rubbing.
No matter what style you choose, you do need to take the time to get your pet used to wearing the shoes because they feel a little strange on the paws at first. Lots of patience, treats, and praise will do the trick as will the reward of going out and having a blast with the booties firmly on their paws.
If your pet won’t adjust to the boots, consider using peel and stick paw pads instead. In a pinch, you could even use thick dog socks as long as they stay on the paws without slipping down.
Pamper with Paw Balm to Soothe and Protect
A high-quality paw balm can help soothe and protect paws in case of accidental contact with hot or abrasive surfaces. You’ll want to apply the balm to the paw pads in the morning and the evening for best results. If you cannot get your hands on specialty pet balms, you can use a smidge of Vaseline instead.
Above all else, take the time to carefully look over your pet’s paw pads nightly to check for any injuries. If they do get burns or other injuries on their paw pads, use a cold compress to ease their discomfort and schedule a visit to your vet.
When you take the time to protect your pet’s paws from high surface temperatures, you help them stay in great health and ready for whatever adventures come your way. Then, you can hit the ground running without worry about the wellbeing of your pet.