7 Ways to Keep Your Dog Happy This Summer


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Looking for great ways to make the most of the season with your dog? We've got a lucky seven ideas.

The kids are on vacation from school, and you’re taking time off from work: That’s what summer is all about.

But doesn’t the dog also deserve a little warm-weather R&R? Of course! Summer is a great time to let your puppy have a little extra fun in the sun.

Just remember to do it safely. As the American Kennel Club reminds you:

Hot weather can make anyone feel uncomfortable, and your dog is no exception.

The AKC offers a bunch of tips for keeping your dog safe this summer. Take a look at their advice, which includes:

  • Keeping your dog hydrated
  • Getting your dog microchipped
  • Updating your dog’s vaccinations
  • Talking to your vet about flea, tick and heartworm prevention

Following are seven ideas for keeping your pooch happy — and healthy — during the “dog days of summer.”

1. Take your dog to the beach

Dog beachrebeccaashworth / Shutterstock.com

Just like people, most dogs love to splash around on a hot summer day. So, let your pup dip his or her paws in the sand. PetFriendlyTravel.com has a list of puppy-friendly beaches throughout the U.S.

If you don’t live near the ocean or a lake, consider turning on the sprinkler for your own at-home aqua fun.

2. Build a dog obstacle course

Dog obstacle courseL. Nagy / Shutterstock.com

In many parts of the country, people and pooches spend all winter and spring cooped up indoors. That means you will want to spend every possible moment outside this summer. Build a dog obstacle course, and you and your pup can get a little exercise in the fresh air.

Cesar’s Way offers a few tips for building such a course on a budget. The DIY Network has more detailed instructions for a three-part agility course featuring a climbing wall, teeter-totter and weave sticks.

3. Whip up some ‘pupsicles’

Dog frozen treatCyhel / Shutterstock.com

After all that running around, your pup is probably ready for a “pop.” There are many different types of frozen dog treats that can keep man’s best friend cool after a hot summer day of fun.

Modern Dog magazine has recipes for everything from frozen fruit to chicken-broth pops. DogVacay has more.

4. Take your dog out to dine

Dog restaurantshulgenko / Shutterstock.com

A frozen treat is fine, but doesn’t your furry family member deserve to be with you as you hit the town?

BringFido lets you find dog-friendly restaurants worldwide. DogFriendly.com also has a guide to pooch-perfect eateries in the U.S. and Canada. Bone appétit!

5. Head off to summer camp

Dog campKazantseva Olga / Shutterstock.com

Many states have summer camps especially geared toward having fun with your best furry friend. Examples include:

Can’t find a dog camp in your state? Then, take your pup camping! BringFido can help you locate a dog-friendly campground.

6. Hit a hiking trail

Dog hikemarvlc / Shutterstock.com

Hiking is one of the best and most enjoyable forms of summer exercise. That’s as true for dogs as it is for people. Just about everybody is close enough to a hiking trail to spend hours of free and healthful fun with their four-legged best pal.

Just make sure to keep your dog hydrated and to clean up after him or her. And check for pests like ticks that might have hitched a ride. PetCareRx offers some tips for the perfect hike.

7. Jog with your dog

Dog joggingDirima / Shutterstock.com

You look forward to your daily run, and your canine companion will too! Plus, it’s a wonderful way to burn extra energy and calories. If your pooch seems disinterested or a little unwieldy at first, don’t give up. According to Health.com:

Even if you think your dog is too hyper or too poorly behaved to jog alongside you, he may just need some training and some time to get used to it.

What is your favorite way to have summer fun with your dog? Let us know in our Forums. It’s a place where you can swap questions and answers on money-related matters, life hacks and ingenious ways to save.

Stacy Johnson

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