Protecting Paws from Hot Pavement

posted: by: Aztec Pet Hospital Tags: "Clinic Specials" "News" 

  How hot is too hot when it comes to taking your pet out to walk or run on hot pavement? The outside air temperature is not an accurate reflection of ground temperature.  Asphalt and other ground surfaces retain heat and the temperature of these surfaces rises exponentially as heat and sun exposure continues.

  When the outside temperature is 77 degrees asphalt is 125 degrees and skin destruction occurs in 60 seconds. Raise the outside temp to 86 degrees and asphalt registers 135 degrees. Just one more degree to 87 and asphalt jumps to 143 degrees.  Ever heard of an egg frying on the sidewalk?  At 131 degrees you can do just that and it will be ready to eat in 5 minutes.  At 135 – 143 degrees your skin will sizzle so why is it that pet owners don’t consider their pets’ paws will also burn? Pet owners may become impatient when their pet refuses to cooperate by jumping around or laying down and refusing to move. They are not misbehaving but trying to tell their owner that their paws are being burned. Our animal companions need us to use good judgement to keep them safe.

  Time of day also has to be considered. Asphalt absorbs heat all day and can only cool down at a certain rate and only when the sun goes down. Pavement that may be acceptable at 7am is going to be entirely different at noon and even in the evening it may still be too hot.

  Before you take your pet anywhere that they will be exposed to walking on hot surfaces press your bare hand or foot down on the ground surface for at least 8 seconds to assess the heat level. If you are uncomfortable then it is too hot for your dog. Even if your dog may be on grass it is still critical to consider other factors to assess their safety accordingly. Exposure to high temperatures and humidity can result in heatstroke for both you and your pet.

  We sell booties in our pet supply store that may provide an alternative solution or leave your pet at home. Whatever it takes to safeguard your pet, he depends on you to do the right thing for him.