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.
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!