When is it too hot for dogs?

Dog in sun

When is it too hot for dogs?

The summer is finally here and we are starting to have some hot days. Have you ever wondered about how the heat effects your dog?

Most dogs have fur, some thicker than others and they feel the heat much quicker then we do, plus they mostly prefer running around rather than walking!

If you have your dog outside in the garden or taking them for a walk, make sure you don’t take them out when temperatures are soaring. Try to make sure they have shade and water in the garden and attempt to walk them later in the day, when temperatures have dropped off a little.

Most of us know it is unacceptable to leave your dog in a car, on a hot day but heat stroke can happen even in your own garden.

Here is a chart to guide you to check weather the temperature is OK for your dog, please add or subtract the points on if they are obese or if they have shade and water. You will also need to consider the humidity as it will feel hotter if its high. In the UK we don’t get as many hot days as we would like but heat stroke can still happen.

Dog Heat Chart
















Notice how size and weight matters and if you have a short muzzled breed like a pug or a bulldog, they are susceptible to heat stroke as, they find it difficult to cool air when they breath so you have to subtract a point straight away!

Please note this is just a guide and if you think it is too hot outside and you are not wearing a fur coat do not leave your dog out in it. Many dogs love to sleep in the sun and young or elderly dogs, don’t always move out of sun when they should be in the shade. Keep an eye on them outside and make sure there is some shade available for them and water at all times.

First Aid

If you find a dog that is suffering from heat stroke, it can be a life or death situation.


  • Panting heavily
  • Excessive drooling
  • Collapsed
  • Vomiting

You will need to get their body temperature down

  • Move them to a cooler/shaded area.
  • Cool them down with cool water not cold by dousing them.  You could use wet towels instead.
  • Let them drink small amounts of water.
  • Monitor until their breathing settles.