Summer is just around the corner, and we can’t wait. The sun on our backs, sunny skies and all things outdoors. Most dogs owners and dogs love summer. We get out of bed with a spring in our step, just thinking about it. Canada doesn’t always have the longest of summers, so we better enjoy every single day. Time flies by so fast if we don’t. What does summer mean for us and our dogs? Well it means all the summer dog activities we can think of.
For our dogs this is the best time to get them out of that winter funk. Just like people during the winter, our dogs can sometimes pack on an extra few pounds of winter weight. We don’t want our dogs to be overweight, as it can put an extra strain on their bodies and shorten their life. Making sure our dogs get up and get moving is important.
Once the weather starts to get nice, we have a tendency to jump right in with things far to quickly. Pushing our dogs right out of the gate at top speed, can injure them just like humans. It’s best to take a slower approach to the activities to start with.
Starting with some shorter walks at a normal walking pace would be a great first step to get going. Dog’s have a tendency to think that they can go on and on, but realistically that is not the smartest choice, and it’s our responsibility to be smart for them.
The good thing with dogs, is they can build up their stamina fairly quickly, especially if you are taking them out faithfully every day.
With the short walks under your belt, now you can maybe add in some ball fetching or Frisbee throwing. Shorter sprints are a good way to get their heart rate up an going. As always make sure to have plenty of water for your dog, if you are going to fetching for along period of time.
I know my Doodle will fetch til he drops. He thinks he is super dog! HAHA! Most important be aware of how much your dog is panting and if he can catch his breath. Don’t let them overdo it.
Ready for an adventure
Growing up in Saskatchewan, we always spent a ton of time camping at one of the many beautiful lakes in our province.
Camping is one of those all important ways that we decompress and really get one with nature. There is nothing like sitting outside having a cool drink and just enjoying nature. At the lake adventure is around every corner.
Our dogs have always loved going camping. I think they feel our excitement for how much we truly love to go. Going camping with our dogs, gives them so many wonderful options of exciting things to do.
We can take them swimming in the lake with a game of fetch the stick, as we toss it in. Running along a dog friendly beach to play in the sand and swim in the water.
If you are luck enough to have a boat, going out fishing, or water skiing is always a fun option. Taking the dog with us in the boat is always a great idea. They can freak out when you actually catch a fish as it wriggles around in the boat. The dog looks at you with that look of “WHAT THE HECK IS THAT”. It is just priceless to see their faces.
A dog in a boat, is like a dog in the car. They have their head outside blowing in the wind, with not a care in the world. Such a fun time.
With summer of course, comes summer holidays. This means days or weeks off work, for some rest and relaxation.
Personally for me, I was never that coordinated, but I always wish I could have pulled it off somehow.
Summer mornings off work are the best. It’s one of the few times a year, where getting up early is fun to do. I see the people out their first thing with a smile on their face riding their bikes with their dog right beside them.
I think they have the right idea. Maybe I could hire a stunt double for myself, HAHA just an idea.
For you maybe it’s a family traveling vacation to see Banff National Park, or beautiful British Columbia. No matter where it is you are going, taking your dog with you is easier than ever. More and more hotels are offering pet friendly accommodations for you and your whole family. Just imagine you and your dog on the open road.
Sounds amazing. Site seeing along the way, making pit stops wherever and whenever you want. It’s your vacation, the possibilities are endless for you and your dog. Dogs love adventures and to see new things and places along the way.
Social day trips
Summer is when our towns and cities come alive. There are usually events booked back to back to fill out the summer schedule.
Whether it’s the Saturday farmers market down by the river, or sidewalk days on your trendy streets. All of these social events allow you to bring your dogs on a leash with you when you come.
These events, are usually super busy and full of people with their dogs. Socializing your dog in these types of situations is fabulous. Not only does it teach your dog how to behave in certain settings, but it is also mentally stimulating for them. This gives your dog time to really think about what he is doing, rather than just the physical part of the walk.
Taking some treats in your pocket can also turn these events into training and teaching moments for you and your dog.
Letting people come up and pet your dog while you are out, is also a great way to train your dog to be polite and friendly.
Don’t let the fun end
Summer offers us a wide range of things we can do with our pets, that help them socialize, that are mentally stimulating and are of course physically active.
There are even things in your own backyard, that you can do very inexpensively. Purchase a cheap kiddie pool and fill it with water for your dog to sit in or just go to cool off from the heat.
Another option might be as simple as sitting in a lawn chair in your backyard and put the sprinkler on for your dog to run through. Dogs generally have a fascination with the hose or sprinkler. This is cheap and easy excitement that you can do together with your dog.
When my dogs were younger, we purchased an inexpensive obstacle course kit that we set up in the backyard. This was hours of fun for our dogs. Of course teaching them how to go through the course, can be comical to start, but they do pick it up pretty quickly.
So whether you are going on a road trip vacation, camping, or just staying close to home, there is always something fun you can do with your dog.
My last bit of advice is to please ensure your dog is hydrated and safe from the sun, as dogs can also get too much sun. Be aware of the sun’s heat and plan accordingly. Keep you and your pet safe.