When is it too hot to walk your dog outside on the pavement or street during the summer months?
I get asked this question all the time because so many clients have either non intentionally hurt their dog or worried about hurting their dogs paws when walking during the summer months. I live in SoCal and during the summer it can get really hot mid day and create a very unsafe environment for walking your dog outside. In most cases its the cement or streets that get so hot it can burn the paws of your dog very quickly. This can cause your best friend some serious pain and long term damage to their paws. I wanted to write and share blog post with the video in hopes that you will share it with your friends or family to help prevent injury to anyones pet. So lets go over exactly at what temperatures will cause damage to the paws of your dog.
Temperatures that can and will cause pain or long term damage to your dogs paws.
- 120 Degrees Discomfort and possible damage if over exposed to this temperature for long periods of time.
- 140 Degrees Can cause permeant damage to paws inflicting serious pain on your pet.
- 150 Degrees (DANGER) Serious damage even after a few seconds of walking on the pavement.
( When we tested these temps at the highest point it was close to 100 Degrees outside)
How to test and see if the pavement or street is too hot for dog walking?
The easiest way to test and see if by placing your hand on the pavement and if you cannot hold it there for more than 5-10 seconds then its way too hot for your dog. I have seen a few popular articles saying place the back of your hand down but I would never do that because the skin on the back of your hand is more way more sensitive. I would think its much easier to burn yourself while testing the pavement using the back of the hand so I stay away from that method all together. On another note please don’t leave any comments saying your put your hand on hot pavement which caused a burn and now your pissed or upset with my way of testing. My response will probably sound something like this ( Why did you hold your hand long enough on pavement in the hot sun so it would burn your hand?) You will know within seconds if its too hot for your to even test as well as walk your dog on the hot pavement.
Another great way is doing some preventive work so you can be 100% sure on safe walking temperatures. Get a temp gun and test the pavement temperature in the afternoon times when your thinking about walking your dog so you can be certain. The hand test is just a quick nitty gritty way of telling in the moment if its too hot for dog walking, but a temperature gun will give you exact numbers. Where I live we do not even walk or train the dogs between 12-4pm in the summer months because the ground is just too hot. There is not a need to test the pavement because we already know its just too hot to walk them safely. Its just prevents the chance that we can ever burn their paws on the pavement. If you live in the desert area like myself the same thing applies for sand or dirt. Our dirt areas can reach 140 degrees sometimes so just remember to always test the surface when its hot outside.
The “SECRET” for never burning your dogs paws during summer time?
Never walk your dog in the heat of the day. I know its pretty sarcastic answer but its the truth! I really really love my dog and I am sure you love your pet just as much as I do. I would never take the chance on hurting them by burning their paws on hot pavement, so I never walk them in the heat of the day. On really hot days I wake up extra early and do all the training and exercising for the day early in the morning when its nice and cool. Another great benefit is the dogs normally will be nice and calm for the day because of the morning workout. If they seem like they need more I take them back out early evening and give them extra time.
So be smart and plan ahead when taking your dog out in the summer months because you and your pet will be glad you did.
Have a safe summer!