As we are deep into the hottest time of the year in Cyprus I just wanted to share some helpful tips on how to keep our four-legged friends cool and comfortable. Many ex-pats move to Cyprus and know it is hot, but we can sometimes forget just how hot that must feel to our furry friends especially if they have been relocated from a cooler climate. Dogs, in particular, have a much higher body temperature than humans to begin with then add all the fur and they can easily overheat.
A car, even with windows cracked, can get up to 51 Celcius (125 F) very quickly when the outdoor temperature is only 26C (80F) making it a real danger for dogs. Imagine how hot they get in Cyprus! When dogs are left to their own devices they only have one way to cool off and that is by panting. When they pant to cool off they dehydrate even more quickly. So we need to help them out and make sure they stay cool!
1st Rule – Never leave a dog in a car unless windows are wide open on all sides and it is a very brief stop. If possible and it is a safe area to take your pet out secure him in the shade. In Cyprus, it is generally better not to take him with you especially larger dogs but it is still possible to do it with care.
2nd: If your dog can not be inside during the hottest time of the day make sure his dog house is in a shaded area preferably a place with a concrete, stone or marble floor and make sure there is plenty of freshwater.
3rd: If you have a larger, thick furred breed and he can not be inside at the height of the heat consider a non-inflatable children’s pool so he can cool off when he needs to.
4th: Dogs can get sunburned too. So again…shade, shade, shade and if you have a short-haired or light skin breed invest in some doggie sunscreen.
5th: Buy a Kool Collar online – it is an expandable dog collar that you can fill with a reusable ice pack! Pretty cool idea!
If you notice that your dog is restless, seems lethargic or is panting heavily these can all be signs they are in discomfort and may be overheating. Older dogs may be extra sensitive also so let us protect our pets from the heat.
And in addition please report any pets that are not being cared for to the local animal welfare agency. In Paphos, Paphiakos is fantastic and they have an emergency rescue number that is on call 24 hours a day. The number is 357 996 55581.
*The sweet dog in the photo was found in a manhole outside our home covered in ticks, mud, starving and shaking. After feeding her my in-laws put her in the back of their brand new car, got her to their home and she has been the sweetest family pet ever since and that was 5 years ago! If you come across a dog, cat or other injured or uncared for an animal please call the number listed above. I can’t imagine what would have become of Caramel if we had not found her.