Where do you like to walk your dog? You may have never asked yourself this question before, but it’s an important one to think over. While dogs have a body that’s built differently than humans, they still need protection from things like heat and sharp objects that can be lying on the ground. It’s good that your dog has proper exercise by getting them out of the house, but when you take them outside you should consider the following for their safety.
Different areas present different challenges
When you take your dog outside, you may have never considered the health concerns that come with it. Depending on the type of material your puppy is walking on, they develop some uncomfortable repercussions.
Dogs have strong paws that are meant for walking on certain surfaces, but require protection. Think of your own feet. Do you have carpet at your house? If you do, your foot walks on soft, comfortable material when you are up and moving, but when you go outside, you put shoes on in order to not cut yourself or get anything stuck in your foot. Your dogs are the same way.
The bottom of our shoes have traction similar to dogs, but there’s one thing our shoes do that a dog’s paw doesn’t: protect from heat. Ground material like concrete and asphalt can be scorching for a dog to walk on during the hot months of the year and without proper protection, their little feet can burn!
Asphalt vs. Grass
Depending on where you live, you may only be around a certain type of material for your dog to walk on. If you live near a city, you might be exposed to asphalt more than someone who lives in a rural area. Both types of ground material prevent their own set of challenges, so it’s important to know the precautions you need to take.
Obviously, grass is softer than asphalt, but that doesn’t mean that your pup can walk freely through the luscious green. Sharp objects such as thorns, hidden items, and harmful bugs can be lying around in the grass waiting to strike your furbaby. While the grass is an easier and cooler substance for your dog to walk on, they still need to be careful where they step.
Asphalt provides a different challenge to your dog that should be taken into consideration when you walk your dog outside. During the summer months, asphalt has a tendency to reach 143 degrees! That is hot! These extreme temperatures can be very uncomfortable for your loved furchild to step on and it can damage their paws.
Your pup could receive a burn in under a minute is the conditions are just right for the asphalt to heat up to a certain degree, and this would be excruciatingly painful for your little buddy. Keeping an eye out for the temperature outside is important when trying to decide if it’s safe or not to walk your dog on asphalt.
Saving your dog’s paws
If you live somewhere where asphalt is the only material your dog has to walk on, note the temperature before going outside. Lucky for you, there’s ways to prevent burning on your dog’s paws.
If the air is below 76 degrees, then asphalt should not reach a temperature hot enough to damage your foot. If that is the case, then you can walk freely on the ground while giving your dog some exercise.
During the summer months is when we have to worry the most about asphalt burning your dog’s paws. Some areas are hotter than others, do if you need to take your dog outside, having a pair of dog socks or booties is a great idea to provide protection from heat and burning. Your dog can even wear these adorable booties outside in the grass!
Since grass is typically safer and cooler for your dog to walk in, you may not need to put your booties on your dog unless you really want to. If you live in a neighborhood that has both grass and asphalt, then it would be a good idea to put them on if you are going for a walk to prevent your dog from any discomfort if the weather is hot.
Consideration is key
If you have never considered the effects of where your dog walks, don’t feel bad! You can still protect them now.
If your dog has experienced cracking or cuts from walking outside, consult with your vet. They may provide moisturizing creams to help restore your dog’s paws health. For the future, consider your location and the areas your dog spends most of their time outside. When the weather is hot, walk your buddy in the grass or provide them a protectant like dog booties to prevent any damage the heat may cause to their paws.