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Summer is a great time to have some fun adventures with your dog. These five tips can help you uncover some fun and safe activities you both can enjoy.

1. Head To the Water

Just like people, many dogs love a refreshing romp in cool water on a hot summer day. Go ahead and plan a trip to the beach for you and your pup. Keep in mind that his paws can be very sensitive to hot surfaces, so be sure to feel the sand before you ask him to walk across it.

If a beach trip isn’t your thing, consider how much fun you could have every day with a backyard pool. Talk to swimming pool contractors Santa Rosa Beach to find out what is involved in making that a reality.

2. Seek Shade on Nature Trails

Maybe you don’t like the water. That’s OK, there are plenty of other options to get you and your canine companion out and about. For example, strolling on nature trails provides a nice break from the hectic pace of everyday life. Look into area parks for dog-friendly options. If your dog is physically up to the task, consider longer hikes at state or national parks. 

You must be prepared to control your dog when you take him to public places like parks. That usually means using an appropriate leash — six feet is usually a good size —  and not allowing him to go off-trail. You should also be prepared to pick up any waste and carry it to an appropriate receptacle.

3. Keep an Eye on the Temperature

If you are planning outdoor adventures, you want to keep a close eye on the temperature. Just like people, some dogs like the heat, and others don’t. You have to know your dog’s comfort level to ensure your adventures are safe and appropriate. A few things to be mindful of when the temperatures get hot include:

  • Ground temperature — Asphalt and other paved surfaces get hot really quickly. If you will be walking with your dog on paved surfaces, consider investing in a pair of booties to protect his paws. 
  • Type of coat — Some dogs have fur designed to handle warmer temperatures. others are better suited to cool weather. Talk to your vet about necessary precautions or grooming styles that can help your dog stay comfortable in warm weather. 
  • Parked cars — Never leave a dog alone in a parked car, even if it is in the shade and the windows are open. Inside temperatures can get to dangerous levels within minutes on a mild summer day, subjecting your dog to discomfort and, possibly, death.
  • Hydration — Carry enough water for you and your pup when you are going to be outdoors in the summer. A collapsible bowl makes it easy to give small amounts throughout the day so he stays hydrated and ready for fun.

4. Build an Agility Course

Some dogs love to do active things, and an agility course can be a positive outlet for all of that energy. Border Collies and Australian Shepherds may be the most common example of agility dogs, but any breed can participate if they have the desire.

What makes this a great summer activity, is that you can set up an indoor course when it is too hot to run around outside. You may have to make it smaller, or only work on one obstacle at a time, but you can still give your pet a chance to stay busy and productive.

5. Be Aware of Risks

There are risks in any activity, and summer fun for you and your pup is no exception. be aware of potential dangers in the thing you choose to take on. For example, a curious dog may encounter a snake or skunk on the trail which leads to trouble. 

Splashing in the water, working on an agility course and taking hikes are all great ways to have a summer adventure with your pup. Be careful about temperatures and local risks to keep it safe and fun.

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