Summer is one of my favorite times of the year. A chance to spend time outdoors with my Pitbulls and enjoy the warm weather. With that summer heat however comes risks that every Pitbull owner must be aware of. It’s important to keep your dog cool when it’s too hot outside and avoid serious problems.
Do Pitbulls get hot easy? As a whole Pitbulls are heat sensitive and can get hot easy. Pitbulls can have a hard time with the heat so it is extremely important you keep them safe during those hot days. Typically temperatures that rise above 20°C/68°F are starting to be too hot for a Pitbull.
When the temperatures rise during those summer months it is vital to keep your Pitbull safe from the heat. Limiting exercise outdoors, providing cool spaces for them to relax, and monitoring their well being are all necessary to prevent potential medical problems.
In this post I will cover some of the things to avoid when it gets too hot for your Pitbull. Signs that your Pitbull is too hot, signs of distress, as well as some great tips to keep your Pitbull cool during those hot days. Let’s dig in.
Do Pitbulls Overheat?
Pitbulls can easily overheat in temperatures that exceed 20°C/68°F. As the temperature goes up the risks of medical issues increase significantly. Pitbulls are very active, energetic, and tenacious dogs, and this can sometimes cause problems when they push themselves too hard.
There are several things you must avoid in high heat with your Pitbull. Being proactive is the best way to prevent potential problems. Overheating can happen very quickly, so before you head outside with your dog, be sure you are ready and able to monitor and moderate their activity.
Things To Avoid In High Heat With Your Pitbull
In order to prevent any discomfort or severe medical issues with your Pitbull getting too hot, you need to avoid a few things. In being proactive you can avoid potential dangers and give your Pitbull the care they need and deserve to prevent overheating.
One of the most common ways a Pitbull can get too hot is from exercise in the heat. Exercise in temperatures over 20°C/68°F can begin creating health risks, especially for dogs who are older, obese, or have underlying health conditions.
Moderate exercise such as walks can still take place in temperatures between 20°C/68°F and 24°C/75°F, but keep the walks at an easy pace. Once the thermometer begins to climb further toward the 28°C/82°F range most dogs are at risk of overheating, especially young, elderly, obese, and unhealthy Pitbulls. Exercise of any kind in these temperatures is not recommended.
Pitbulls are extremely active dogs, and regardless of age or health they will need some exercise. Avoid exercise during the hot times of the day, if the temperatures are much cooler in the early morning or late evening, plan your walks and exercise at those times instead.
Exercise in high heat can be extremely dangerous even for the healthiest Pitbulls. Keep your dogs safe, avoid anything strenuous during peak heat times, and always watch for signs of overheating. More to come below.
Just like us humans, long exposure to heat can lead to problems. Not only will the heat of the day cause your dog to struggle to regulate their temperature, they can also be prone to sunburns.
Pitbulls have short, fine coats, and long exposure to direct sun can give them a nasty sunburn, just like humans. Avoid keeping your dog outside in the direct sun for very long to avoid these painful skin traumas. Make sure if you are outdoors they have adequate shade available to cool down and escape potential sunburn.
Leaving In Car
I feel like this should go without saying, but never, EVER, leave your Pitbull inside a car when it’s even a little warm outside. One of the fastest ways to cause health risks and potentially fatal heat stroke is from leaving your Pitbull inside a car on a warm or hot day.
Even leaving your Pitbull in a car on a day when it is 21°C/69°F outside can feel like 32°C/90°F after only 10 minutes in the car. These interior car temperatures climb higher as time goes on and will quickly turn fatal for even the healthiest of dogs.
If you are out with your Pitbull running errands bring them inside the shops with you. Otherwise leave your dog at home. Even a quick stop that “will only take 5 minutes” is no excuse to leave your Pitbull in a hot car. The errand can wait, your dog can’t.
How Hot Is The Inside Of Your Car?
Signs Your Pitbull Is Too Hot
It is important to monitor your Pitbull in any degree of warm or hot weather. Each dog will respond differently to temperatures based on their age, fitness level, and general health. Every dog is susceptible to overheating, heat stroke, and respiratory issues at a certain point, so watch for these signs that your Pitbull is overheating.
- Heavy panting
- Heavy drooling
- Trouble breathing
- Rapid heartbeat
- Dark or red gums and tongue
When your dog begins to show signs of any of these symptoms, get them somewhere immediately to cool off. If the symptoms appear severe or don’t quickly subside seek immediate medical attention at the closest veterinary clinic or hospital.
How Do I Keep My Pitbull Cool?
Knowing how to keep your Pitbull cool is the best way to prevent potential health problems. Being proactive with your dog’s care and knowing how to cool down your Pitbull is your responsibility as an owner. Providing plenty of shade, water, air circulation, and cool areas is essential on hot days.
Here are a few tips on how to keep your Pitbull cool during those hot days. Not only is this essential for your safety, but it can also be a lot of fun for your dog, all while keeping them comfortable.
Bring Them Inside
Playing outside on a nice summer day can be a lot of fun, but sometimes it’s a good idea to take a break from the heat. Bring your Pitbull inside to a cool area of the house, especially during those peak heat hours of the day. Periodic breaks from the sun and activities will keep them cool and safe from any potential health concerns.
Plenty Of Shade
When you are spending time outside in the sun it’s critical your Pitbull has a shady spot to cool down. Whether you are camping with your Pitbull or just hanging out in the yard at home, plenty of shade is a must.
Even shady spots and our homes can get really hot on certain summer days, this is when additional tools like cooling mats come in handy. Cooling mats are a great place for your Pitbull to lie down and have a nice cold way to cool down their belly and body.
These are great to keep handy on hot days and provide an added layer of coolness to your Pitbulls day. You can make one of your own at home, or find some great and affordable cooling mats on places like Chewy and Amazon.
I personally recommend the Green Pet Shop Cool Pet Pad. This cooling pad is a breeze to use, easy to clean, and you can take it everywhere you go with your Pitbull.
Plenty Of Water
Always have plenty of cool water available for your Pitbull. No matter where you are or what you are doing, keeping your Pitbull hydrated with clean and cool water is critical in the heat. Dehydration can happen extra fast during those hot summer outings or afternoons lounging in the yard. Keep water handy for your dog at all times.
Create A Breeze
Proper air circulation for your Pitbull is important in keeping them nice and cool on hot days. Whether you set up a fan they can lay in front of or keep a couple windows open in the house, and a nice breeze can help keep them cool.
I have a couple oscillating fans in my place to keep my Pitbulls cool on those hot days. As well as myself for that matter. Sometimes even an air conditioned home needs a bit of help with some circulating air. Whatever you choose, keep some air moving and make sure your Pitbull has access to a nice breezy spot to chill.
Nothing beats a cool treat on a hot summer day, and the same is true for your Pitbull. There are a ton of healthy and easy Pupsicles recipes you can choose from to give your dog a nice cool treat to keep them cool.
I love making Pupsicles for my Pitbulls. Our YouTube channel has a video you can watch for 5 different delicious recipes you can make in no time for your Pitbull. Check it out, and while you are at it, make sure you Boop the Like and Subscribe buttons.
Taking a cold dip in the summer is the closest thing to heaven you and your dog could experience. A kiddie pool filled with nice cold water in your yard is perfect for those hot days. Your Pitbull won’t need much encouragement to head in for a cool belly soak and a little play when you set one of these up.
If you don’t have access to a small shallow pool, or a yard, local swimming spots could be an alternative. Exercise extreme caution in these spots. Practice all the water safety necessary to keep your Pitbull safe and prevent any troubles in the water.
Pitbulls do get hot easily and we have to take all the necessary precautions to ensure their safety and be proactive to ensure they remain comfortable. With a little bit of knowledge and planning you and your Pitbull can enjoy the entire summer and stay cool in the process.
Be selective of the amount of exercise and the time of day you take your Pitbull out for walks. Change your schedule to line up with cooler times of the day to make sure they aren’t exerting themselves during the hottest points of the day.
Never leave your dog in the sun for too long, especially NEVER leave them alone in the car. Not even for a minute. Prolonged exposure to the sun, and even short periods of time in a car can be fatal. Plan ahead and make your Pitbull a priority.
Keep your Pitbull cool with a proper environment, places to chill, treats to enjoy, and some breezy spots to relax. Watch for signs of overheating and act immediately if you think your Pitbull is beginning to overheat. Stay safe, stay cool, and have a chill summer with your Pitbull this year.