As the heat of summer arrives, it's crucial to keep our furry companions cool and comfortable. Like humans, dogs can suffer from heat-related issues, and overheating can lead to serious health problems. One solution that's gaining popularity is the use of dog cooling coats. These innovative garments claim to help regulate a dog's body temperature, but how do they work, and are they safe for our beloved pets? In this article, we will delve into the science behind dog cooling coats, explore their benefits, and when it's appropriate to use them.
How Does a Dog Cooling Coat Work and Are They Safe for Dogs?
The Science Behind Dog Cooling Coats
What Is A Dog Cooling Coat?
Dog cooling coats are specially designed jackets made from breathable, moisture-wicking, and cooling materials. The primary goal of these coats is to keep dogs cool in hot weather by preventing overheating and allowing them to regulate their body temperature more effectively.
How do Dog Cooling Coats works?
Most dog cooling coats work based on the principle of evaporative cooling. They're made from a fabric that retains water without becoming overly soggy. When the coat is soaked in water and placed on the dog's body, the water slowly evaporates, absorbing the excess heat from the dog's skin and fur. As a result, the dog feels cooler as the temperature around them decreases.
Understanding Thermoregulation in Dogs
Dogs have limited sweat glands, mainly located on their paw pads, which makes it challenging for them to cool down via perspiration like we do. Instead, they rely on panting to release excess heat. Dog cooling coats aid this natural cooling process by providing an extra cooling effect, reducing the strain on a dog's thermoregulatory system.
Benefits of Dog Cooling Coats
Preventing Heatstroke and Heat Exhaustion
One of the most significant benefits of using a dog cooling coat is its potential to prevent heatstroke and heat exhaustion. These life-threatening conditions can occur when a dog's body temperature rises to dangerous levels. A cooling coat can help maintain a safe body temperature, especially during outdoor activities on hot days.
Suitable for Active Dogs and Hot Climates
Dog cooling coats are particularly useful for active dogs and breeds that are more susceptible to heat-related issues. They are ideal for dogs that enjoy outdoor adventures, such as hiking or running, as well as for those living in areas with consistently high temperatures.
During Long Car Journeys
If you’re planning a long car journey with your dog in high temperatures, a dog cooling coat is a great way to ensure peace of mind when travelling in a warm car. They can help to keep your pup comfortable and lower the number of stops you have to make along the way. Look for one that can be used with your dogs harness to ensure extra safety when travelling by car. But remember, never leave your dog unattended in a vehicle, even if they are wearing a cooling coat.
Post-Surgery Recovery Aid
After certain surgeries or medical procedures, dogs may be required to limit their physical activities. A cooling coat can help keep them comfortable during their recovery period.
When to Use a Dog Cooling Coat
During Outdoor Activities
A dog cooling coat can be a highly beneficial accessory when you're taking your dog out for a walk, hike, or any outdoor activity in hot weather. It helps regulate their body temperature, making the experience more enjoyable and safer for them, giving you peace of mind on your fun days out.
On Sweltering Days
When the temperature rises to extreme levels, even a short walk outside can be hazardous for dogs. In such cases, a cooling coat can provide significant relief and lower the risk of heat-related illnesses.
For Brachycephalic Breeds
Brachycephalic breeds, such as Bulldogs and Pugs, are prone to overheating due to their short snouts, making it difficult for them to breathe efficiently. A cooling coat can assist in keeping them cool, especially in hot temperatures.
When Dog Cooling Coats Aren’t Appropriate
Cold Weather Conditions
Using a cooling coat in cold weather or during the winter season is unnecessary and may lead to discomfort for the dog. In such situations, it's better to opt for warm and insulating dog coats.
Indoor Use in Moderate Temperatures
If your dog spends most of their time indoors, and the indoor temperature is already comfortable, using a cooling coat indoors might not be required.
Dogs with Skin Sensitivities
Some dogs may have skin sensitivities or allergies to certain fabrics used in cooling coats. In such cases, it's essential to choose hypoallergenic options or consult a veterinarian before using a cooling coat. Look out for cooling fabric that doesn’t stiffen as it dries, as these can cause discomfort and irritation to your dogs sensitive skin. Not only that, some designs that require regular re-soaking have a period between being soaked and drying out stiff where the sun has an adverse effect on the material and can in fact start to over-heat your dog. That's why it's particularly important to choose a good quality cooling coat that provides long-lasting relief without any potential harm or irritation. Pawdaw of London’s cooling coats don't dry hard and rigid, they stay soft and comfortable, reducing the risk of rubbing or irritation and provide a double-layer of protection to keep your pup safe in the heat.
Q: Are dog cooling coats only for outdoor use?
A: While they are highly beneficial for outdoor activities, dog cooling coats can also be used indoors in excessively hot temperatures. They're also perfect for helping your dog stay cool during long car journeys.
Q: How long does the cooling effect of the coat last?
A: The duration of the cooling effect depends on factors like ambient temperature, humidity, and the coat's material. Some need re-wetting every 1-2 hours to help extend the cooling period. The super absorbent material used for the Pawdaw of London Cooling Coat stays wet for around 5 hours, on the hottest of days before re-soaking is required. This is due to its double layer, meaning the top layer protects the underneath layer from the sun providing long lasting relief.
Q: Can I leave a cooling coat on my dog all day?
A: It's best to supervise your dog while they are wearing a cooling coat, especially during the initial uses, to ensure their comfort and safety, however, as long as you re-soak the material as frequently as recommended, they can be used all day.
Q: What should I do if the weather changes while my dog's wearing a cooling coat?
A: If the temperature suddenly drops and you no longer feel your pup needs protection from the heat or sun, you can remove the coat and monitor the temperature. The handy thing about Pawdaw of London's dog cooling coat is that it comes in a stylish waterproof carry-bag so that you're prepared for any conditions. It's also a safe way to store it in between uses either when you're out and about or just at home.
Q: Can I use a regular wet cloth instead of a cooling coat?
A: While a wet cloth can provide some relief, cooling coats are specifically designed for dogs to provide longer-lasting and more effective relief.
Q: How do I clean a dog cooling coat?
A: Follow the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning and maintenance. Some cooling coats may require hand-washing and others aren't washable so it's best to look out for ones that are easy to clean in between uses. The great thing about the Pawdaw of London Luxury Cooling Coat is that it can be machine washed at 30º or 40º.
Dog cooling coats can be a valuable accessory to help in keeping our pups safe and comfortable during hot weather. By using the principle of evaporative cooling, dog cooling coats provide effective relief from the heat, reducing the risk of heat-related ailments. However, it's crucial to use them appropriately and consider specific situations where they might not be suitable. Always prioritise your dog's well-being and consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns about using a cooling coat.
If you're looking to help ensure your pup's comfort and safety in the heat this summer then look no further than Pawdaw of London's Luxury Cooling Coat. Thanks to the clever design, it covers 80% of your dogs body for maximum cooling protection while enjoying those summer rays. Not only that, it also comes with a handy travel bag and 90 days to trial it and make sure it's right for your dog. Click here to view Cooling Coat sizes.
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