Protecting Your Dog’s Paws from Hot Pavement: A Summer Essential Guide

As summer approaches and temperatures rise, so does the heat on the pavement. For dog owners, this can pose a significant risk to their furry companions. Dogs’ paws, though tougher than human feet, are still sensitive and can suffer from burns when in contact with hot pavement. Here’s a guide on how to protect your dog’s paws during the scorching summer months.

Understanding the Risks

Hot pavement can quickly become uncomfortable or even dangerous for your dog. At temperatures as low as 77°F (25°C), asphalt can heat up to 125°F (51°C), hot enough to burn your dog’s paws. More than discomfort, burns can lead to blisters, raw skin, and the risk of infection. Remember, if it’s too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.

Prevention is Key

Preventing your dog’s feet from being scalded is important. If you think your dog could be at risk of damaging their paws, you must take the necessary precautions. These include:

Test the Pavement

It’s essential to test the pavement before walking your dog, especially during hot weather. The surface temperature of pavement, asphalt, and concrete can quickly rise significantly higher than the ambient temperature, posing a risk of burning your dog’s sensitive paw pads.

Here’s a simple rule of thumb to test the pavement: Place the back of your hand or barefoot on the surface for seven seconds. If it’s too hot for you to keep your hand or foot there, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.

man and woman walking dog after checking for hot pavement to protect your dog's paws
Photo by jonas mohamadi on

Choose the Right Time to Walk

Avoid the hottest part of the day, typically between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Instead, opt for early morning or late evening walks when the pavement has had a chance to cool down.

Seek Shaded Areas

When possible, walk on the grass or in shaded areas. Not only is this cooler for your pup’s paws, but it also provides a more exciting sniffing experience!

Protection Strategies

The following measures can help protect your dog’s paws from the hot pavement:

Dog Boots or Shoes

Dog boots or shoes are an excellent protective measure, offering a barrier between your dog’s paws and the hot pavement. They come in various sizes and styles to suit different breeds and paw sizes. Ensure they fit comfortably and securely, without causing discomfort or restricting movement.

dog boots for hot pavement

Paw Wax

Paw wax is another great option. It’s applied directly to your dog’s paws, creating a protective, breathable barrier against the hot pavement. Plus, it helps prevent damage from sand and salt in different seasons.

paw salve for dogs from cbd dog health

Regular Paw Checks

Regularly checking your dog’s paws for signs of heat damage is crucial. Look out for redness, blisters, or any other signs of discomfort. If you notice anything unusual, contact your vet immediately.

Make Summer Fun and Safe

Summer is a time for fun and relaxation, but as a responsible dog owner, it’s essential to be aware of the risks that come with rising temperatures. With these simple preventive measures and protective strategies, you can ensure your dog’s paws stay safe, allowing both of you to enjoy those summer strolls without worry.

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