Featuring Jen Larson, KPA-CTP & Courtney Emken

Concept by Courtney Emken

Summer is hot, especially in TEXAS! Here are some activities to do with your dog when it’s too hot to take them for a walk, and things to keep in mind when walking your dog during the hot summer months.

This isn’t just a matter of keeping your dog engaged and entertained, but also a matter of safety and well-being for your dog.


– So it’s been a really hot summer, and I’m here with Courtney today to talk about what you can do to keep your dog busy when it’s too hot to walk.

– That’s right. So I know at my house, we use a lot of frozen treats. We use Lucie’s Legacy and it’s a, there’s all kinds of frozen bones and duck heads and duck feet and things we can give our dogs and that really helps work their brain. It’s a great type of enrichment that helps work their brain and tire ’em out and then they’re nice and cool.

– So, frozen treats are a really good form of enrichment because you’re also working some sensory stimulation. They’re working their natural drives to chew and to lick and to smell things, so that’s a great way to keep a dog busy on a hot day.

– So another fun thing you can do with your dog is play games, and my personal favorite to play with my dogs is Hide & Seek, because that teaches a great recall.

– Yeah, that’s a really fun game, and that really does build recall because they get to find you and it’s really exciting and then you follow that up with even more reinforcement and so it really strengthens the recall. Some other fun games that you can play indoors are, one of my favorites is Canine Nosework. So that’s a scent and search activity where you’re either putting out a couple pieces of Tupperware or cups, something like that, putting some treats in one, and then shuffling them around in front of the dog, and so the dog has to figure out which container has the treats in it. And as the dog gets better and better at the game, you can start expanding the search area, adding new objects, adding elevation, and it’s just a really fun and exciting game for dogs.

– That’s awesome, I love that!

– So, if you are gonna walk your dog during the summer, and I do recommend that you get your dog out for at least a few walks, you know, each week, I would recommend walking either early or late, before it gets too hot or after it cools down a little bit.

– Yeah, and that’s great for reactive dogs, so there’s less dogs out early and late in the day, and so that’s a lot less stressful for the dogs and a lot lower chance that you’re gonna run into a dog that you don’t wanna meet. And if you don’t have a place to bring your dog to walk, you can always rent the dog park at DogBoy’s in the morning or the evening, and then you have a good five acre space for your dog to actually run and play.

– And swim.

– Oh yeah! We’ve got a pond back there, so if you wanna swim, that’s a great, hot, heat of the day activity too.

– So, if you don’t feel like driving out all the way to a pond or a lake, you can also just put a little baby pool in your backyard and have your dog splash around in that.

– One of the other benefits to making sure you’re walking early or late in the day is that when you’re walking in the middle of the day when it’s super hot, that pavement is really hot and can burn a dog’s feet super fast. We notice that a lot when we do events that dogs are walking around on asphalt and while the owners are standing around talking to us, the dog is going like this, you know, and it’s because it’s just too hot on the pavement. You wanna be really careful about that.

– So if you are gonna be walking your dog during, kind of the heat of the day, the middle of the day, I would absolutely recommend sticking to shadier trails, so not just being out in the sun. Walnut Creek is a great place for that. They’ve got water spots, they’ve got lots of shady trails, and also making sure that you bring some water along with you so your dog stays hydrated.

– Yeah. I think the one thing that we wanna make sure that we mention, whether your dog is entertained or not, you wanna make sure in the hot summer months, especially in places like Texas, that your dog is getting as much indoor time as possible, because it’s just really not safe to leave them outside, even in the shade. It’s just too hot out there.