Signs Your Dog May Be Overheated


My Hayley and Django were really huffing and puffing one particularly day last summer. Just going out in the yard to do their business caused them to come back in the house looking like they just braved the Sahara. Here in New York, we’ve had a few heatwaves this summer with temperatures feeling about 100 degrees. While my kids relaxed in the pool, our dogs tried their best to stay cool.

When we were out in the yard, Django felt the need (as she always does) to stay with us, even though our living room was air-conditioned. Hayley, older and wiser, did what she had to do outside and quite happily retreated to the cooled off room with the A/C. I sprinkled Django a little with the hose but she still seemed pretty hot and was panting quite a bit, so I went inside with her after a little while. The truth is that I wanted to go inside, too.

When temps get this high, it’s vital for dog owners to keep a watchful eye on their pups because dogs can become overheated quite fast. Unlike us, panting is their only way to cool off and it’s a pretty inefficient system at that. 

Dogs with smushed up faces, likes pugs and bulldogs, need even more vigilance during the heat and should be kept in air conditioning. The same goes for older and overweight dogs.



Signs of Overheating in Dogs

How can you tell if your dog is overheated? Look for these signs:

—Heavy, rapid panting

—Salivating

—Glassy-eyed expression

—Anxiety and restlessness

—Confusion

—Exhaustion or fatigue

—Bright red or blue/purple gums

—Vomiting or diarrhea

—Collapse


What To Do


Owners need to act quickly if they think their dog may be in distress from the heat. Take the dog immediately to the shade, offer a bowl of water to drink, and put cool, not ice cold, water on them, especially their belly area. Very cold water will constrict the blood vessels and actually trap heat. If you can take your dog’s rectal temperature, do so and report the findings to your vet. A normal temperature is about 101.5 or so. A reading of 105 is life-threatening. When in doubt, always take your dog to a vet.

And it goes without saying that you should never, ever leave your dog in a car, even for a short time. Even when temperatures are what you might consider mild, cars can heat up fast and reach dangerous temperatures in a short amount of time.

Make sure there is a shaded area for your dog to stay in when outside and always leave plenty of fresh water available. But really, I’m a firm believer that dogs should live inside — not out — ever, and especially when it’s too hot or too cold. 

Dogs deserve to be inside with you in front of an air conditioner or fan on hot summer days. Remember, if you’re hot, they are, too!


Read More:


What Does Your Dog's Sleeping Position Mean?




There have been times when I’ve looked at my black lab Django and my chihuahua Hayley both curled up in tight ball-like positions and have wondered how they ever managed to get comfortable enough to sleep that way.

But at night, I’ll find Django sprawled out along the foot of my bed as I compete with her for the last two inches of blanket. You might think that since there is limited space on the bed but ample room on the floor that she might curl up in bed, but it’s often that the opposite is true.

Peculiar, you may think, as I did, until you understand why dogs sleep the way they do.

Does Your Dog Bark When Looking In The Mirror? Here's Why!


Ever since we brought our black lab puppy home, she has slept in our bed. The first night at home, she whimpered and cried and my husband placed her beside me and she stopped. She’s been there ever since. For the most part, she doesn’t bother me, although now fully grown, she can sure take up space and leave you grasping onto the side of the bed out of fear of falling out. But I digress.

When she was still young, every now and then, Django would wake up, stand, and start barking in the middle of the night and I couldn’t figure out why. Then on afternoon, I heard her barking her head off when I was downstairs and she was upstairs. A quick look in my room and I saw her losing her mind and barking at the dog in the mirror…herself.

Five Tips For Packing A Doggy Bag When You Board Your Pup On Vacation

For pet owners, deciding to take a vacation can be a daunting undertaking. Unless you have family who are ready, willing, and able to pitch in, and take care of your pet until you get back home, the decision can be unnerving. Resolving to board your dog is something that many owners are not willing to do. Some owners decide to leave their pet home and hire a pet-sitter instead.

If you decide that boarding is for you and your dog, once you find the perfect, loving and responsible people who will care for your dog while you’re away, the next thing to do is pack up some necessities (as well as comfort items) to make the transition as smooth as possible.

We asked DogVacay for some tips on what to pack in your pup’s bag to prepare for his/her boarding experience:

Ten Signs You Should Not Get A Dog


Every dog deserves a loving home, but should every person have a dog?

As much as I advocate adopting unwanted pets and opening your home and heart to a homeless pup, some people just should not have dogs. People often brush over the chores associated with living with a dog. You will have to clean up, feed, walk, and play with this animal daily, and at regular intervals throughout each day no matter your lifestyle.

If you don’t see yourself as someone who can handle that level of engagement, it is kinder to not bring home a puppy or dog because too many people adopt dogs only to surrender them soon after when the reality of owning a dog kicks in. I have known people who see my dogs and comment that maybe they should get a dog of their own. However, they are often the same people who would have a problem with daily walks, vet care, and even regular feedings. I tell them that dogs are a lifetime commitment that requires a deep understanding of yourself and your willingness to bring another life into your home.

Not everyone should own a dog. Could you be one of them? Read on for 10 signs you should NOT get a dog:

Could Your Dog Be A Senior?

senior dog

There are countless articles and books on puppy care, but considerably less advice is available about caring for senior dogs. Senior dogs are wonderful, special beings and they have earned their right to enjoy a comfortable life, yet sadly many senior dogs are left to fend for themselves when they outgrow their cuteness.

Older dogs comprise a considerable part of animal shelters because many people simply do not want to adopt senior dogs. Even those of us who lovingly vow to care for our dogs from puppyhood to old age often miss the signs (or unintentionally refuse to believe) that our precious pups are reaching their golden years.

Tips For Traveling With Your Dog


Summer is here and the heat is on, but that doesn’t mean you have to hide out at home. Whether you’re a beach or a mountain lover, you can bring your dog along if you have the right know-how and gadgets to keep her/him cool and protected.

After all, a family vacation isn’t a family vacation unless your best furry friend comes along for the adventure. Yett travel can be stressful for pets and owners alike. Dr. Carol Osborne, DVM offers must-have advice on the ‘have pet, will travel’ revolution!

Babies Who Grow Up With Pets Have Less Allergies



Having a pet is good for your baby, says a study
 out of Johns Hopkins Children’s Center. Researchers at the hospital studied nearly 500 babies in large cities, such as New York and Boston and tracked their health, along with allergen and bacteria levels in their homes.

The study found that babies who were exposed to pets within the first year of life were less likely to suffer from asthma and allergies than those babies who were exposed after age one. It also found that babies exposed to cockroaches and mouse dander were less likely to suffer from wheezing by age three.

What is Breed Specific Legislation?

breed specific legislation pit bull

By Amanda Sullivan

What is breed specific legislation?


Most dog lovers probably know how pit bulls unjustly get a bad rap but many people still do not know about breed specific legislation (BSL), which impacts countless dogs and their owners. According to the ASPCA, BSL is defined as “the blanket term for laws that either regulate or ban certain dog breeds in an effort to decrease dog attacks on humans and other animals.” 

BSL largely discriminates against dogs that fall under the pit bull classification however, there have been BSL enacted against American Bulldogs, Rottweilers, Mastiffs, Dalmatians, Chow Chows, German Shepherds, Doberman Pinschers, any mix of these breeds, and even dogs who resemble these breeds. Today more than 700 U.S. cities have enacted breed-specific laws.

Feel the Heat: 10 Potentially Hazardous Summer Hotspots for Pets


“Having your furry family members tag along on summer vacation is becoming more popular with pet owners, but it also adds an extra level of responsibility,” says Dr. Jennifer Maniet, DVM. “Just be sure to prioritize your pets’ needs when making your plans. Make sure they will have access to plenty of clean water, shady places to cool down, and above all else, constant supervision. Summer goes by quickly and the last thing you want is to spend time and money treating potentially avoidable medical emergencies.”

Here are some common summertime risks to help pets and their parents surf safely through the season.

Your Dog Has Ringworm: What To Do Now

Although the name often misleads pet owners into thinking a worm has invaded their pet’s bodies, ringworm is actually a fungus that can affect the hair, skin and nails. This fungus can lead to circular patterns of hair loss and red, scabby bumps. Before you introduce another pet into your home, knowing the facts about ringworm and how to prevent the skin condition from spreading is crucial. 

Dermatophytes, fungi that feeds on protein in the skin, hair and claws, is the agent of ringworm. Infections are transmitted by contact with infected hairs from another infected pet in the environment, or through bedding, grooming tools, and even fleas. The fungus can be passed between animals and humans, but young and elderly people are more susceptible to developing the infection. Those with weak immune systems are also more prone to ringworm.

House Hunting and Moving With Your Dog





Finding a new place to live when you have a dog can be quite an undertaking. It's definitely doable, but requires some  work. And moving is stressful, no matter when or how you do it. Moving with a dog can certainly add to the day's hassles but a little preparation can make the transition a little more smoother. This guest post from Bernie The Boxer filled with tips on finding a home and prepping for moving day!

 Your lovable, tail-wagging, slobbery dog might not look like a human, but she’s a member of your family. Until you perfect your "Doggese," you’ll have to do your best anticipating her needs when house hunting, and especially on moving day itself. Here are some tips for what to look for in a new home and how to keep your dog calm on moving day:

We Love You, Hayley Girl

Our sweet Hayley girl
We lost our Hayley girl yesterday.

Many of you know the trials that Hayley has gone through over the years: her diabetes diagnosis, Cushing's disease, canine blindness. She also had a severe hypoglycemic attack a few months ago and extreme pancreatitis two years before that.

Each time we were warned that her prognosis was not good and she may not survive. Each time, we worried and prayed, and each time, she recovered.

She was the amazing Hayley, and literally nothing would keep her down. She would come home with her energy renewed and right back to her old self, lapping up her food with delight. Even after she lost most of her teeth, she still loved her food. Always in a happy mood, always running around in a quick pace, Hayley was the literal example of living life to its fullest.

This time everything was different. She started displaying neurological symptoms and all signs pointed to a brain tumor. And still, she tried her absolute best to push through and eat and walk, and there came a point when we had to let her go because Hayley, the incredibly strong and incredibly sweet girl deserved to be happy again and pain free.

Discovering A Lump On Your Pup

Django knows something is up
My daughter, Kate is an animal whisperer. Every since she was little she has always intuitively known when something was wrong with one of our pets. She always knows when Hayley's blood sugar is dipping low and she can use a snack. She knew when our Lily was feeling ill. She even knows when one of the dogs has to use the yard. 

So, of course it was Kate who discovered a smallish, golfball sized lump on Django's neck. It isn't exactly the top of her neck as much as it is the side, close to her left shoulder.