Paving & Protecting Your Dog
The Cape Cod area typically enjoys moderate weather in every season. Summers are seldom as hot as they are in many locations that are not far away. In fact, if the temperature reaches the upper 90s, it is quite likely to set a new record for the highest temperature ever measured in the area. Unfortunately, however, the balmy temperatures can lull pet owners into a false sense of security when it comes to walking their dogs on asphalt pavement.
Paving & Protecting Your Dog – Dogs Have Sensitive Paws
The rest of your dog may be covered in fur, but its paws are bare skin that is no tougher than the skin on the average human’s foot. Your dog’s paws contain a large number of nerves that provide feedback on the safety and composition of the terrain. If the dog’s paws are damaged, the nerves may be destroyed. Walking your dog on hot asphalt can burn the skin on its paws or cause blisters that are easily infected.
Paving & Protecting Your Dog – Why Asphalt Pavement Can Endanger Your Dog’s Paws
The basic problem with walking your dog on asphalt pavement is that the pavement will always be much hotter than the temperature of the air. You might think that if the air temperature is a pleasant 77 degrees Fahrenheit, the pavement will be safe for your dog. However, at that temperature, asphalt pavement can be as hot as 125 degrees. If the air temperature is 88 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature of the pavement can reach 143 degrees. Considering that you could fry an egg on pavement that is 131 degrees Fahrenheit or that human skin can be burned on pavement that is 140 degrees Fahrenheit, it is easy to see how asphalt pavement can pose a risk to your dog’s paws.
Paving & Protecting Your Dog – How to Protect Your Dog’s Paws
The best way to determine whether asphalt pavement is too hot for your dog is to feel the pavement. Place your hand on the pavement with the palm facing up and hold it there. If the heat becomes uncomfortable in less than 10 seconds, keep your dog away from the pavement. Choose a grassy area or the beach for your walk.
Schedule walks for early morning hours. The pavement will probably not be cool enough for your dog until long after sunset, but it may be safe in the hours before the sun has had time to elevate the temperature of the pavement.
If necessary, purchase some well-fitting shoes or socks for your dog. However, keep in mind that not all dogs will be willing to endure having their paws covered. You should also purchase any footwear for your dog from a groomer, veterinarian or pet store with personnel having the expertise to ensure a proper fit.
Think twice about taking your dog with you to a street fair, swap meet, festival or other event that will require your dog to be on asphalt pavement for several hours. Even if the temperature is not exceedingly high, the prolonged exposure to asphalt pavement can still blister your dog’s paws.
Dirtworks, Inc., offers a full line of asphalt construction, asphalt paving, asphalt repair and maintenance, site work and excavation services. We are a local asphalt company that is family owned and operated. Whether you need a basement excavated, a road built or a parking lot constructed, we can help. Our offerings include sealcoating, crack repairs, asphalt milling, parking lot striping and asphalt paving. We deliver extraordinary work at competitive rates. To request a free estimate, call us at (508) 240-5541 or complete the online form.
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