Wise Up, Cool Down

My friend Molly The Wally barked this question. If you haven’t seen her blog, pop over and have a look – she’s sure to brighten your day with a laugh!

Molly: How do you cope with heat in the summer?

Clowie: I avoid being in the sun as much as I can. Sunbathing is for cats and lizards! Even as a very small puppy, I would head for the shade whenever I could. It is harder for puppies to regulate their body temperature than it is for adults.

I get my bipeds to brush my coat a lot as soon as I start shedding in the Spring – it’s nice to get rid of the undercoat as quickly as possible. The most difficult time for me is when it first gets warm and I still have my thick winter coat. I like them to keep my coat really well brushed all summer – it allows the air to move through my coat better.

I don’t have my coat clipped, as I naturally shed the soft undercoat which keeps me warm in winter. I retain the coarser top coat and that protects me from the sun. If the top coat is clipped, I would be at risk of sunburn. A double coat doesn’t always grow back properly after clipping, it can spoil it as the longer top coat grows more slowly than the undercoat.

We always carry plenty of water on walks. Now we’re living in Spain, this means all year round because the sun can be quite hot on a pleasant day in the winter when my coat is thick. In the summer I take my walks in the early morning before it gets hot and my walks always include water and shade. I love the forests and the streams and lakes all year round, so I don’t complain! Dipping my paws in water helps me to cool down.

Clowie, Pyrenean Mountain Dog (Great Pyrenees), in the stream

This is so refreshing!

I hardly go out in the car while the weather is really hot. They have fitted a fan that clips onto the grill that separates the back of the car from the rest of the car– it plugs into the cigarette lighter and helps get the cool air from the air conditioning into the rear section of the car. We carry a reflective blanket, it folds up really small and would make some shade for me in an emergency.

In the very hottest part of the year the temperatures can reach 40 degrees Celsius (slightly over 100 Fahrenheit), I stay indoors and only pop out when I have to. Even the cats enjoy lying on a cool, tiled floor when it gets that hot. We get the bipeds to give us water from the fridge and to put ice in it.

Children often tell me that I look like a polar bear – now you know how I try to keep as cool as one!

See you next Wednesday!

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93 thoughts on “Wise Up, Cool Down

  1. Me and Nellie are often told We too, look like a polar bear. It must be our gleaming white fur and large frames that make people think this. We are moulting and shedding our white fur all over the house and garden. Mummy says it looks like it is snowing sometimes. Daddy says it is amazing where white fur can get too. For some reason he objects to finding it in his morning cup of tea. Me and Nellie don’t mind. Love Nellie and Jasper the two bestest maremmas in all the land.

    • Hi Nellie and Jasper, the birds scurry around picking up my hair in the Spring and use it in their nests. Your Daddy should be used to hair in his tea by now – it improves the flavour!

  2. Your smart to dip your toes in the lake to cool off. I lived at a lake for a long time and my dog Buddy used to love to dip his whole body in the lake then go roll on the beach to get nice and sandy….he was a mess, but we still gave him lot’s of hugs

  3. Your coping mechanisms are good Clowie. Bet you’re happy that the cooler temperatures are nearing 😉

    • Yes, I’m already getting longer walks. The autumn is the best time of year for going higher up in the mountains.

  4. You are such a cute polar bear.. When sometimes and I say sometimes, it gets hot in the UK I wear sun cream on my ears and pink nose..Alfie has to have on too. Coz we blonde 🙂 xx00xx

    • Even though I’m as blonde as you, I don’t need sun cream because my nose is black. I also have black rims to my eyes and lips for protection.

  5. It always amazes me how well trained you have your humum and dad. Can I ask where did they get the fan from?

  6. Smart one Clowie.We seldom have temperatures that high but when we do we pretty much follow what you do. We don’t like to run around when it is hot. Thanks for kind comment. Have a cool Wednesday. Best wishes Molly.

  7. Although I have a thick coat too, sometimes I do sunbathe:-) BUT it doesn’t get that hot here.
    I like the look of your fan, I might have to mention that to daddy 🙂

  8. You are smart, Clowie! You know what to do to stay cool. Do you ever go swimming – besides just your toes?

    Love and licks,
    Cupcake

  9. Hey Clowie, Jet here.

    We do many of the same things to stay cool here in the tropics. We get that extra 100% humidity stuff for much of the year, too!

    Mom shivers when she sees goldens who are clipped for the summer for the exact reason you mentioned, their coats protect them. She let Koko’s gorgeous fur grow back when she adopted her and has done the same with JJ. After 9 months of lovies, super high quality food, natural shampoo and an easier life, JJ’s coat is silkier, shinier, more lush, and softer. Her withers are longer, her tail is fuller and her ascot is fluffier. Coincidentally, Mom made note of this a few nights ago after our latest spa day!

    • Hi Jet! Most of the time here, it is a dry heat. I find it much harder when we have a humid spell, I snooze the day away then.
      Your Mom must be really pleased to see Koko’s coat so improved.

      • Koko, is my golden sister who passed OTRB, Clowie… sorry if we made her seem like she was still with us. JJ is my sister who has the current improved coat.

  10. Stan loves his paddling pool when it gets hot – we set it up under the table on the patio so it’s shady as well and Tommy thought this was then his new den!

  11. Clowie I think you’re WAY prettier than a polar bear……but I see why kiddies think you look like one with your snowy white fur! Love the photo of you taking a dip in the pond………

    Kitty Hugs, Sammy

  12. I always like to dip my toes in the lake too! Not much of a swimmer. Keeping cool is always important and fun too when you can get a good splash

  13. I love that you have the “heat situation” figured out and that you get to take a dip every now and then to cool off. It makes things so much better!

    • I love splashing about in water – and when it’s hot they always include a pool or stream in my walk!

  14. Dorothy Abernathy

    Back before my cocker spaniel went to the bridge, we used to take long walks in the park during the mild weather. There is a pathway through the woods that is about 4 kilometers. Parts of the path are very well shaded, while other parts, boardering the meadow, is in full sun much of the day. Brady adored these outings. He loved wading in Neshaminy Creek and flushing out any birds or small animals in the bush. But he did not like the sun! Brady walked on a leash very well. I could allow small children to walk him because he would pace himself accordingly. But when we hit those patches of path that were in the sun, he would quicken his pace and hurry across as fast as possible, without pulling, whimpering the whole way. Then when we would get back to the shade he’d slow down, sometime stopping to roll in the cool grass. I worried that paved path was too hot on his paws and kept him to the grass, but it didn’t matter. Once while we were walking with a friend holding the leash, he stopped and lay down in the shade, just before we would’ve entered the sun. Brady would walk twice as far if it meant he could avoid the sun. I kept him field cut in the summer and made sure he had plenty of water and he made sure I was safe from sunburn. I miss my sweet Brady. I hope he’s happy playing under the shade trees near the bridge.

  15. I don’t like the heat at all; in fact my family has to pick me up and take me out onto the grass when it’s over 90 degrees. I run to the shade right away. My mom keeps my hair cut really short in the summer, which helps, but I still don’t like the heat and always ask to go back inside as soon as I’m done going potty.

  16. You’ve always reminded me of the polar bear of Coca Cola.
    Do you like to get in the water for a swim or just dipping your paws?

  17. Clowie does indeed look like a polar bear. Nice piece.

  18. Clowie,that is excellent advice. Bad humans get into trouble here because some of them are so stoooooopid that they leave dogs in their cars in the summer while they pop into a store. It makes us mad and sad at the same time.
    The Maple Syrup Mob
    xxxxxx

  19. You’ve got lots of great ways to stay cool Clowie. Laying under a shade tree and having a dip in a cool stream sounds like a wonderful way to cool down. 🙂

  20. I have to cope with the heat and high humidity 12 months a year in this tropic country. My humans brush me everyday as I shed a lot and my mom does not like those furballs in the house. I don’t stay outdoor for too long and I never like sun bathing. However, my brother Mika likes it a lot and he can even sleep under the hot sun.

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