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Discussion Starter #1
I live in Southwest Texas in an area where the temperature is regularly (and for months on end) 105 to 112 degrees. I also have a 4 and a half month old, ~6 pound Toy Poodle Mix that loves to sniff anything and everything outdoors.

My pup, Coco, does not seem to care that it's dreadfully hot outside, and so will run and jump and chase butterflies despite the heat. How long can a pup that size stay out in the heat before there are detrimental effects? I know *I* would not prefer to stay out there more than 10 minutes, so I'm thinking that's about the limit. Should she even be outside that long?

PS: The heat is dampening my ability to properly housetrain Coco. Dragging her in and out of the house from air conditioning to 112 degree weather until she goes doesn't feel like it would be good for her, so I admit I've been letting her go on pads inside on occassion.
 

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Be careful because smaller dogs can overheat more easily than larger ones. At least, I think that's true... (someone let me know if I'm wrong :D)

But in general, if Coco is inclined to play outside it should be fine in short spurts... Just keep a VERY CLOSE eye on her. Make sure she takes plenty of water breaks. I just googled signs of overheating in dogs and got this:
" * Profuse and rapid panting
* Bright red tongue
* Thick drooling saliva
* Wide eyes with a glassy look
* Lack of coordination
* Vomiting
* Diarrhea
* Coma"
 

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Like with people, by the time a dog is showing signs of overheating like those Canyx listed, it is already a serious situation.

At over about 95 degrees, you have to be really cautious. Younger dogs have less ability to control body heat than adult dogs, in addition to her being a very small dog.

My suggestions:
If at all possible, set up a shaded area that you can use for potty breaks. A large patio umbrella is the simplest, if you have the money and room for it, a 12 x 12 canopy (the framed kind like for garden parties) is great. Both are portable and good if you rent. If you own your house, you could look into more permanent solutions that both dogs and people could make use of like pergolas, trellises and fixed awnings and canopies.

Limit time to about 20-25 minutes when the heat index is 90-100 degrees and to about 10-15 minutes when it is 100-110. Heat index over 110; strictly potty time and back inside. Adjust this as needed if you notice heavy panting, drooling or glassy eyes before the end of that time frame. Get up early in the AM for some playtime outside before full daylight.

If she likes water, try letting her play in a sprinkler or splash in a small baby pool.

Lots of cool water available all the time. I keep water in the fridge to fill Chester's bowl after walks but I don't let him gulp a ton at once. Drink a bit, pant a bit, drink some more, repeat.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the responses!

Right now I live in an apartment complex so I can't get a large umbrella to shade her when she's outside. I do try to take her to the shady spots, though. When my lease runs out I plan on either renting or purchasing a single family home so I can have my own fenced back yard. This should make taking her out a whole lot easier. And I think I will look into ideas to shade areas of the lawn when that happens.

Coco does like water--at least she likes to splash in her water bowl. I had thought of getting a baby pool for the small patio I have attached to my apartment. Maybe I'll go ahead and do it.

Luckily we can't go very far for walks yet because Coco is pretty set about the area she likes to walk, and it's always fairly close to my apartment. When I feel it's time to go inside for water, we're usually not very far. I hadn't thought of not letting her gulp the water down all at once, though. I'll have to watch to see if she does that.

One thing she does do that makes me think the heat affects her more than she lets on while outside--when she does come inside she immediately lays down, frog-style, on the tile entrance, even if she's only been out 5-10 minutes in 95-100 degree weather. And sometimes 5-10 minutes is not enough time for her to use the bathroom. I've cut her potty breaks short on more than one occassion because of the heat (especially if I take her out when I get home from work during the hottest time of the day). The only time I can really spend on working on housetraining is, like ya'll mentioned, early in the morning and later at night (which translates into around 6:30am and 8:30pm). At that time the weather is a cool... 85-90 degrees. lol.
 

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Try Big Lots or a Dollar General market for a cheap under-bed storage box (the rubbermaid style containers) that are long and shallow. Makes a good splash pool for a small dog and much easier to move around than a larger kiddie pool. And you can always dry it out and use it indoors for actual storage in the winter :)
 

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Try Big Lots or a Dollar General market for a cheap under-bed storage box (the rubbermaid style containers) that are long and shallow. Makes a good splash pool for a small dog and much easier to move around than a larger kiddie pool. And you can always dry it out and use it indoors for actual storage in the winter :)
Great idea! Thanks! That should fit her well.
 

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I'm in Arlington, TX, which is about 5 degrees cooler. As a pup, my dog was fine outside at 90 degrees, and still does OK in the shade or cloudy days at 105 degrees. I keep 3 non-metal containers of water outside, re-freshed when I put him out. When he gets hot, he goes into the shade by himself.

I expect that your girl will choose to go back into the shade when she by herself. However, she may stay with you in the sun, longer than she wants. Ten minutes in the sun at 110 degrees sounds like a good rule of thumb. You might try to soak her down, before going out, and that might give you more time in the sun. Note: use a wet cloth or sponge to get her wet, rather than dumping water on her from the hose. Most dogs don't like to be 'pelted' by water, even if the like playing in water.
 

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^^ Thanks!

I think I'll try soaking her down in the late afternoon when it's the hottest. I don't want to get her too used to not going out to use the bathroom. I also want to start really leash training her in the coming weeks so she can go for actual walks rather than just potty break, wandering "walks."
 
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