It is mid-summer in Arizona and that means scorching
temperatures and very hot streets and sidewalks that remain warm well into the
evening. While your regular routine may be a nightly walk with your pet,
sometimes that becomes difficult to accomplish during our summer season when
temperatures remain elevated long after the sun sets. Give some of these
activities a try for a safe alternative to strolling the neighborhood!
1. Take a Dip!
· If you have a pool, try swimming with your pup! Swimming can be a great aerobic exercise during hot weather. You always want to supervise your pet when they swim and make sure to teach them where and how to exit the pool for their safety.
· No Pool? No Problem! Kiddie pools are an inexpensive alternative if you don’t have a pool in your back yard. Fill with cool water and let the fun begin! Since the small size makes this option more of a splash pool, try throwing in some favorite water friendly toys or treats your pet can bob for. Remember to drain and clean the pool daily to keep the water clean and healthy.
2. Slow Down and Smell the Roses
· Our furry best friends have an incredible sense of smell! While it is estimated that humans have around 5 million smell receptors, dogs have 125 to 250 million smell receptors, depending on their breed. When it is cool enough to take a spin around the block, slow your pace and allow your pet to smell anything and everything. This activity provides mental stimulation as your pet works to seek out and identify various scents. Compare it to when you first rise in the morning and smell that fresh brewed coffee that perks your brain right up!
3. Hide and Seek
· Now that we know our dogs have a smelling super power, we can apply that knowledge to all kinds of indoor activities. Play hide and seek with your pup throughout the day. Find a hiding spot in the house and call out letting your dog find your trail and search for your location or play with treats! You can also hide various treats or pieces of kibble around the house for your dog to search out and find. This stimulates the brain, provides a challenge, and offers a fun reward at the end of their quest!
4. Reward Based Training
· There is nothing that motivates a dog like positive reinforcement, especially when there is a tasty reward involved. Use the summer months as an opportunity to work on training commands and leash manners by practicing for 15-20 minutes a day indoors. Keep a bag or treat pouch filled to reinforce training commands and good behavior. Not only will this strengthen your bond with your pet, but it will also leave your dog happy and content from having something to work on.
5. Interactive Toys
· Let’s face it, in this heat by the end of the day sometimes we are just plain tired. You may not be up for long swims or training sessions every night, so it can be beneficial to shop for some interactive toys for the summer. Items like puzzles, Kong toys, other treat dispensing toys, and items that use multiple materials for variation in texture can spice things up for your pup.
Check out some more information on interactive toys here:Pup Life: Beating Boredom
6. Puppy Playdates!
· If you have a social dog who enjoys meeting and playing with other pets, consider setting up indoor or pool time playdates with friends. If your dogs have never met before, be sure to do a proper introduction to ensure everyone gets along. Here are some helpful introduction tips: How To Do A Dog Introduction
We wish you and your pets a safe and fun summer! Stay cool and hydrated!