You wouldn’t know it by the weather for the last week, but summer is upon us in Las Vegas. Now that pools are open and school is out, more and more people are hitting the road for vacation, sometimes with their pets in tow. Traveling with a pet means taking a few extra steps in planning and taking a few extra precautions, especially if you’re going somewhere hot like Las Vegas. Heat exhaustion can happen in a short amount of time in the 110° degree-plus temperatures we see in the peak of summer, and it can lead to things like strokes, seizures and in the most severe cases, death. Here are a few things you can do to keep your pet cool in the heat:
Carry more water than you think you need.
You can never have enough water in this dry desert. Period.
Keep a collapsible bowl on you
This is especially applicable if you’re going to be hiking for most of the day (you should, ideally, then have one for food and drink) but these are great to keep in your car/backpack just in case you need to stop in the middle of a long drive for a rest break.
Plan your excursions around the hot parts of the day
In the worst of the Vegas heat, temperatures reach their peak around mid-day/early afternoon, and don’t give up until about seven o’clock at night. If you’re planning any outdoor adventures with your pet, I would advise leaving early (ideally around sunrise), or as the sun is setting.
Or, you could just go to Mount Charleston. It’s about 20 to 30 degrees cooler in the mountains than it is in the city – and there are trees!
Invest in some cooling pads/vests
If you’re going to be out in the hottest parts of the day, there are things you can do to alleviate the heat’s effects on your dog. Cooling vests and cooling pads are a great place to start. They work by reflecting solar radiation and using evaporative cooling from the water that you fill them with or soak them in. The mats are great for long car rides, and the vests are ideal from daily activities to long hikes. They all vary in cost, but you can get them from places like Amazon, Chewy, and Petsmart.
Take advantage of indoor places to walk your dog.
Bark Parx in Henderson is an indoor dog park facility where you can take your dog to socialize and get a little exercise. They’re going to require shot records, but you can upload that to their website (online registration is available), so you don’t have to carry a copy with you when you go.
Also, I’ve been told you can walk your dog inside Home Depots (provided they are potty-trained and well-behaved).
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