It can be frustrating to watch a dog owner take their dog on a walk when you know it’s way too hot to be doing so.
You can just feel the dog’s paws burning on the hot sidewalk or cement roads.
There are times when it’s too hot to walk a dog even on the grass.
What Temperature is Too Hot to Walk a Dog?
The general rule is that you should not be taking your dog on a walk when it is 80°F or warmer out. Some places will even say that anything about 77° is too risky. Temperatures will also depend on where you live as humidity can play a role as well.
The ideal temperature to take your dog on a walk is around 53-68°.
It is better to stick with the lower side of the range though, especially for long walks.
Dogs can develop heat strokes easily when they are outside in the heat for too long.
Going on a walk is an exercise that already brings up the temperature of the dog.
Just as people shouldn’t play sports outside when it’s too hot, dogs also shouldn’t be going on walks when it’s too hot.
Not only can a dog easily have a heat stroke, but the sidewalk isn’t comfortable to walk on at a certain temperature.
The cement of a sidewalk heats up quickly and will get hotter than grass or dirt.
When it gets warm out, the sidewalk will be too hot to walk on and can burn your dog’s paws.
Letting your dog burn their paws just causes them pain and it isn’t worth bringing them on a walk for.
The lower temperatures make sure that it isn’t so hot that your dog will have a heat stroke and also won’t cause the sidewalk to become a hot stovetop.
How To Walk a Dog When It is Warmer Out?
While it is risky to walk your dog when it is hot out, there are some things you can do to keep your dog cool and comfortable for longer.
No matter how long you are taking your dog out and no matter what the temperature is, you should always bring water on a walk.
Your dog needs to stay hydrated when they go outside, especially if they are going to be walking and exercising outside.
Keeping your dog (and you while you’re at it) hydrated is key to keeping your dog comfortable outside on a walk.
Being hydrated allows your dog to be able to cool itself down through panting outside.
Bringing water is important for both hotter and cooler days.
Dog shoes aren’t just torture devices that some owners put on their small dogs.
Instead, dog shows are commonly used to protect the paws of your dog both in hot and cold weather.
If you live in a city where the sidewalks get hot quickly in the year and quickly during the day, dog shoes will help prevent your dog’s paws from burning when outside.
Not every dog will be willing to wear shoes, but if your dog is willing to walk around in shoes for a while then you can take your dog on a walk in warmer temperatures.
Some people use dog shoes in really cold areas that get a lot of snow.
This then protects the dog’s paws from freezing temperatures that can be painful when they have to go outside for whatever reason.
Dog shoes can protect your dog’s paws from many kinds of outdoor dangers. However, it is mostly up to the dogs whether they are going to be useful or not.
There is no point in fighting to get your dog’s shoes on to go on a 10-minute walk.
Choose The Proper Time
If it is a hotter day out, don’t walk your dog at the peak temperature.
Instead, walk your dog early in the day or later in the day so it isn’t as hot outside.
Usually, during these times there is more shade to keep your dog in so that they don’t get too hot outside.
Choosing earlier or later in the day can help with the ground temperature not being too hot.
Earlier in the day, the ground hasn’t had enough time to heat up while later in the day the ground has had time to cool.
Check The Ground Temperature
Speaking of ground temperatures, you should check how hot the ground is before you go on a walk.
This won’t require any fancy equipment; you just need your hand.
To see if the ground is too hot for your dog, put your hand flat on the ground for 5-10 seconds.
If it is too hot for you to keep your hand on the ground for that long, then it is way too hot to go on a walk with your dog
If it is uncomfortable to keep your hand on the ground, it is still better to avoid the walk.
Only go out with your dog if you can keep your hand comfortably on the ground.
Different Dogs Have Different Temperature Needs
There is a dog breed for almost any temperature and climate.
Huskies are known for being able to withstand cold temperatures with their thick and fluffy coats.
Great Danes have coats that help them keep cool in hotter temperatures.
Depending on where you live, there are some breeds that you should not leave outside for too long or take on a long walk.
If you live in a hot place, it is not wise to bring a husky or a French bulldog out on a walk when it’s over 55°
Dogs That Don’t Do Well in Hot Temperatures:
- Short-faced dogs (pugs, bulldogs, boxers, Boston terriers, etc.)
- Alaskan malamutes
- Chow chows
- Other dogs that have coats meant to withstand cold temperatures
Dogs That Are Better at Handling Hot Temperatures
- Great Danes
- Golden retrievers
- Water spaniels
- German shorthaired pointer
- Border collies
- Chesapeake Bay retrievers
- Other cattle/herding dogs
When you are planning on getting a dog, keep in mind the climate that you live in.
Where you live will dictate what kinds of dogs will do well in the area.
It is not a good idea to live in Florida with a husky, especially without the proper precautions.
Always Be Aware of Your Dog
If you do decide to take your dog on a walk on a hotter day, make sure to know their body language.
Your dog will let you know when they are starting to overheat and need to get to a cooler place.
Sometimes, your dog will not want to go on a walk in the heat.
After a few minutes of being outside, they may try to pull you or move back towards the house.
This is a good indicator that it’s too hot for them.
You’ll also know if the ground is too hot for your dog by how they walk.
If their steps are jittery or if they are high stepping, they are trying to avoid touching the hot ground.
Either move them to cooler dirt or take them back inside at this point.
Finally, see how they are panting.
Most dogs will pant outside whether it’s mildly warm or really hot, but if they seem to be panting excessively, it is a good indicator to go back inside.
Though, make sure that they get some water first as too much panting can lead to dehydration.
So many dogs get really hurt each year from going on walks outside when it’s way too hot for them.
This is why it’s so important to note how hot it is outside and to take the proper precautions.
Not every dog can go without regular walks, but you can at least make their routine safe for them.
Check the temperature of the air and the ground before taking your dog on a walk.
If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for them.
If the temperature seems to be too warm, consider taking your dog on a walk early in the morning, evening, or maybe at night.
That way it won’t be as hot in the air and the ground won’t be as hot too.
Some dogs will allow you to put shoes on their paws which can be helpful if the ground seems to be a little too warm.
These will protect their paws from the ground temperature.
Just be aware that not every dog will be willing to wear them.
Keeping your dog safe outside is so important.
Making sure they are cool, hydrated, and safe will allow both you and them to have a better walking experience.
If you live in a hot area, having a good and cool walking routine will keep both you and your dog free from heat stroke and dehydration.
Your dog can still get the exercise they love as long as you prioritize safety.