Greener BeeGreen TipsDog owners share: Tips to keep your companion healthy when the mercury climbs

Hindsight being what it is, Anthony Hauck knew better. A couple of summers back, the temperature was high and the air was thick with humidity. He recognized the conditions, but wanted to bring his older English cocker spaniel, Sprig, outside for a brief training session. Just five minutes of throwing a bumper to the pup, he told himself.

It wasn’t long after, more than a minute, but certainly less than five, that Sprig had an absent look in her eyes. She started to wobble as she walked, and there was foam around her mouth. Recognizing some of the symptoms of heat exhaustion, potentially serious, Hauck hurried Sprig to the veterinarian, where she cooled down and made a full recovery. But it’s an experience the Lino Lakes man won’t forget.

“It was a really scary deal, and there was that real-life realization that something like that can happen in just a minute,” said Hauck, a dog lover and public relations director for Pheasants Forever. “When you have a hunting dog, or a working dog, they want to be active and you want them to be active and ready for the upcoming fall. At the same time, you want them to be around for 12 or 14 years.”

For dogs and their human companions, summer is a great time to frolic about and explore the world. Nevertheless, Hauck and countless other dog owners have learned, there is plenty that can go wrong, too, and it can happen quickly. Following are four tips for ensuring your dog, whether he’s a hunter or a family pet — or both — stays safe when the mercury climbs.

Keep ’em cool

Mark Haglin, who has owned Pine Shadows Kennels in Brainerd since 1976, works with dogs just about every day. He hunts with them. He trains them. He walks them. His biggest concern about dogs during the summer is that they’ll become overheated. It’s important to give them ready access to shade and water, and to be prepared with a wet blanket if there isn’t water to dunk them in.

A black Labrador retriever.


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