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'summertime and the livin' is easy' Except for Simon. This boy simply cannot handle the heat. Any thing over 75 degrees and the tongue is down to the ground, with puddles of drool and hot air panting. I've never had a dog this sensitive to heat. Any chance he may have yet another malady that causes this sensitivity? So, any suggestions? He does not like wading pool in the least. I was thinking about a cooling jacket, but do they really work? My property is very shaded (I breed fleas :frown2:) but that doesn't seem to effect any cooling properties. I hate seeing him uncomfortable and certainly don't want him to lack exercise, the boy needs to run or my cats pay the price. Will soaking him prior to going out have the same evaporation effect it does for humans, or just make him moist hot? What do you do to help your beast keep cool?
 

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Exercise him early in the morning and at night, work his brain during the hottest part of the day. Cooling vests do work, to an extent. Acclimating him to the outside temperature is probably your best bet. If you keep your house very cool, he will have a harder time adjusting when he goes outside. One of mine practically lives in the baby pool when we are outside at home.
 

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My big boy slows down with the humidity. It can be mid 60s but if the humidity is very high, he still has trouble cooling down. The best place to wet the dog down is the inner thigh area. Sometimes I'll soak his head but he doesn't like it much. My boy won't lay down in a kiddy pool but will splash it on himself with his front paws (and tear up the kiddy pool in the process).

At night I use a Chill Spot bed. home | chillspot pet cooling station I used to put one in the hatch-back part of our car when we had IPO training in the summer time. We've changed sports and now have a shorter wait during training but we still use the chilling bed in our bedroom. Helps us all sleep at night, since he's not wandering around looking for a cool place to rest.
 

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Shadow does not like heat. She suffers horribly, goes right off her food and then pukes because her stomach is empty. She likes to splash in her pool and dig at the dinosaurs on the bottom. My old guy hated the pool but we convinced him by filling it full of floating toys.
I take her out really early and really late and keep her quiet in the coolest room in the house with a fan on her during the day. I am considering that if the mosquitos insist on joining us for evening fetch they should learn some tricks.
Soaking him down may help a bit, I let Shadow play with the sprinkler, but be very aware that the air is still hot and they are breathing it in. I much prefer to exercise in the cool evenings and mornings.
 

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Toys in the pool! Duh, why didn't that even occur to me. He is so ball driven, I think he would rush into a burning building for his tennis ball. That may work. I have misgivings about the evening bouts of exercise, due to his drinking so much water, then waking me 2 or 3 times a night to go out. But if I can get him in the pool in the evening, to cool off, maybe a gallon of water won't be necessary. I do tend to keep the air on at around 75 degrees, the humidity here is awful, but will crank it a bit higher if it's going to help him acclimate. I will also check out the cooling beds, although he really doesn't have a problem in the house, but in the truck, we are both sliding about in the drool...nasty. Thanks so much for the advice. I think I will forgo the jacket since it won't really help for long periods and we will likely both want to avoid the hot afternoons. Simon if grateful, ya'll.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
ps I am certainly glad that Simon is not the only one to suffer so in the heat. I was thinking it may be a health issue that needs to addressed and Lord knows, we. do. not. need. more. of. those. phew
 

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None of my dogs tolerate heat. We usually are home bound end of spring thru early fall. They get limited exercise in the yard playing with each other.

AC is a big deal and a dog, like humans, will lose their natural ability to tolerate heat and humidity when exposed to too cool of AC for extended periods of time. I live where the summers are incredibly hot and humid. We have been in the 90s with awful humidity for days here and the start of summer is still a month away. But anyhow, I do not have AC and my dogs tolerate the 90 degree heat and high humidity without even panting as long as they are at rest.

I do hose them down or put a pool out occasionally, but the water can create a microclimate of high humidity around them, keep them wet at the skin, and cause some smelly or yeasty problems.
 

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Exercise him early in the morning and at night, work his brain during the hottest part of the day. Cooling vests do work, to an extent. Acclimating him to the outside temperature is probably your best bet. If you keep your house very cool, he will have a harder time adjusting when he goes outside. One of mine practically lives in the baby pool when we are outside at home.
All of this. We had record heat here last weekend, so I was up early with my dog to get her out running both Sunday and Monday. I had her out of the heat before it hit 80 both days.

She can handle one off day, but it’s really not fair to her to expect her to sit around like a potato for more than that if I can help it. So because her exercise needs don’t fluctuate with the weather, we get out but are careful about it, and we stay more sedate during the heat of the day even if we spend short periods outside (because conditioning is necessary). Plenty of cool water, shade, and just keeping an eye on things. I was home alone and couldn’t get the kiddie pool out of storage by myself but my dog just loves that when it’s hot.

I try to get creative, because it’s unfair to treat her like a lump of fur when she is in fact not. The challenges of owning a GSD.


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Aack yes balls in a baby pool. Max is obsessed with balls so it’s fun. I fill a baby pool with water and fill them up with balls. It becomes his little nest. When the kids are out in the yard all day so I make sure I set this up because the dogs do not want to come inside we have lots of trees so the dogs can cool down under the shade . This was my sons idea I had used the pool for baths!
 

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The summers are very hot and humid here in TN. Early morning and evening exercise is what we do. Will Simon chase spray from a hose?--Asher LOVES to chase water from the hose and it's pretty cooling, and can help him burn some extra energy. I'm no expert, but I would think soaking him down would be helpful in keeping his body temperature cool in the heat, you could exercise him in the shade, offer water, and let him take lots of breaks. You might want to ask people who have working dogs how they keep their dogs cool during performance events and such. I think there are such things as cooling vests, but I could be wrong.
 

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My guy was born in December, LOVED the snow, and does NOT know WTH happened since May started. Hot outside? What is this???

We do not have AC in the house. For all but maybe 2 weeks out of a year, us humans are OK and not too uncomfortable. Boon, however, cannot take off his fur coat! I bought a cooling pad for him and put it in his crate. It worked rather well, until he chewed through the cover and exposed the pad. I won't bother buying another until he stops chewing anything but his toys.

When it is warm out we kennel him in the downstairs bathroom where it is at least 10F cooler anyway, and the bathroom tile must feel nice to him. Exercise is in the morning and evening. As summer hits I will experiment with kiddie pools, sprinklers and of course, take him to the dog beach.
 

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How about licking ice cubes?
 

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Providing there are not any health issues (as Magwart suggested):

If you can find a holistic vet that is certified in TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) there is a formula called "Blood Heat" that we gave our boy during the summer when he couldn't stand the heat. A certified herbalist can also put together a specific formula for your particular dog.

"The Chinese principles of treatment for this herbal blend are to cool Blood, clear Heat, and detoxify."


Check your kibble to see if any of the following 'Hot" or "Warm" foods make up a big part of the ingredients that will contribute to the "heat" in his body. If so, you may want to find a food to feed during the hot weather.
Hot Foods:
· Meats
· Lamb, Mutton, Sheep Kidney, Venison
· Fish
· Trout
· Vegetables
· Cayenne Pepper


Warming Foods:
· Meats
· Chicken, Chicken Liver, Ham, Pheasant, Turkey
· Fish
· Anchovy, Lobster, Mussel, Prawn, Shrimp
· Vegetables
· Black Bean, Squash, Sweet Potato
· Fruit
· Cassio Fruit, Cherry, Date, Peach, Longan
· Grains
· Oats, Sorghum, Sweet Rice
· Nuts/Seeds
· Chestnut, Coconut, Pine Nut, Walnut
· Etc.
· Ginger, Goat’s Milk, Molasses, Nutmeg, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, Turmeric, Vinegar



Changing his kibble for the hotter months to one with a cooling protein like duck or rabbit may help.

These are cooling foods:

  • Meats
  • Duck, Rabbit
  • Fish
  • Clam, Cod, Crab, Scallop, Whitefish
  • Vegetables
  • Bamboo, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Celery, Chlorella, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kelp, Lettuce, Mushroom, Seaweed, Spirulina, Tomato
  • Fruit
  • Apple, Banana, Cranberry, Kiwi, Lemon, Mango, Orange, Pear, Strawberry, Tangerine, Watermelon
  • Grains
  • Barley, Buckwheat, Millet, Mung Bean, Wheat, Wild Rice
  • Misc
  • Duck Egg, Flax Seed Oil, Marjoram, Peppermint, Salt, Sesame Oil, Tofu, Yogurt
Here is an example:

INSTINCT LIMITED INGREDIENTS DUCK FORMULA:

Ingredients:

Duck Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Canola Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid), Duck, Montmorillonite Clay, Natural Flavor, Coconut Oil, Choline Chloride, Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate, Niacin Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin), Salt, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Ethylenediamine Dihydriodide), Freeze Dried Duck (including Freeze Dried Ground Duck Bone), Pumpkinseeds, Rosemary Extract. https://www.instinctpetfood.com/dogs/limited-ingredient-diet/instinct-limited-ingredient-diet-grain-free-recipe-real-duck



I have not personally used the following, but there is a "Cooling" recipe there (put together by a certified herbalist) that you can make for your dog during the hot weather months. https://pettao.com/energetically-cooling-dog-food-recipe/



Moms :)
 

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we are in the process of acclimatizing here. The heat has arrived! I work from home a lot so I have been been working from the patio set in the yard. The 2 dogs play, get hot, rest, play again, rest again..

Seems to be working, this past Saturday it was in the high 80s during IPO training and he did great, even for bitework. No issues. It was easily 88 degrees and humid.
 

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I am so glad I came back to this thread. (took me a bit to figure out how to do it ;) So much great information, thanks guys! The cooling diet looks like my ticket to guilt free outside time, along with the balls in the pool to get him in there. It did just that. He was dismayed at first, but did step into the pool and allowed me to splash the water up on his chest, then he was ready for round 2 of the never ending game of fetch... He has been tested for heartworm and is negative, that's the only thing that is NOT wrong with this boy. Again, I appreciate all the feedback and tips.
 
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