Any pet owner knows that our four-legged friends love nothing more than a stroll outside during the day. However, uninformed owners could be putting their companions through serious pain and injury.
With the increased temperatures, many are finding ways to enjoy the outdoors. A popular activity for pet owners is a walk with their pet. However, the ground temperature is often overlooked during these hot days- primarily concrete and asphalt. On warm days, the pavement can heat up to dangerous levels for your pets’ paws, unbeknownst to those in footwear.
According to TheSprucePets.com, a veterinarian-reviewed advice site for all things related to pets, “despite what one might think, the temperature of the air is not the same as the temperature of the pavement. This means that as it gets warmer outside, the ground can approach scalding temperatures that are unsafe for paw pads. Asphalt temperatures can be much hotter than the air temperature (when in direct sunlight with no wind and low humidity), so it’s important to be aware of the difference between pavement and air temperatures. Pavement temperatures can be 40 to 60 degrees warmer than air temperatures.” This results in pavement temperatures being in the low to mid 100s on days that may feel pleasantly warm.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t walk your pet during the summer heat. However, it does mean that more thought must be put into it. Rather than walking the animal on the pavement, consider walking on the grass or other surfaces that are poor conductors of heat. Alternatively, put coverings over your pet’s paws before taking a walk. If neither of these is an option, you should wait until later in the day when the temperatures begin to fall or try to entertain your pet indoors.
If you are unsure if the pavement is too hot, simply take your hand or bare foot and place it on the pavement for 10 seconds. If you cannot comfortably keep your hand or foot on the pavement for that time, then it is time to avoid it entirely or bring your pet back inside. While it is great to enjoy the sun with your furry best friend, it is more important that the proper precautions be taken so that your pet is not hurt in the process.
So if it comes down to it – skip the walk and enjoy your time with your pet in another way. You will both be thankful that you put their well-being first.