Taking your puppy out with you for more than a walk or the dog park requires a bit of planning, especially during the summer months. In this guide we’ll walk you through all the considerations and pet approved products we love so you can be safe while having a great time together.
Remember when we learned that too much exercise can lead to growth deformities as your puppy grows up? Well, since puppies can’t safely walk far distances so you’re better off having a carrier that can give your puppy’s legs a rest if you’re going to bring them with you for an extended period of time. We recommend having one of these on hand so you can use it as needed. Similar to a crate, it might take a bit of training to get your dog used to the carrier, but once they are used to it, they will likely love it!
This is a great versatile option. Backpacks are great for activities like hiking, and can also be used comfortably for commuting on the metro or walking around the city. Your pup sits on the bottom of the bag so you can rest assured they are comfortable. Some options like the K-9 Sport Sack secures their front legs, while others serve as a more traditional carrier that your dog can snuggle up in like the Yotnet Backpack. They both clip into your dog's collar so there's no chance of them jumping out.
This option works best for small and lightweight puppies (15lbs or less). It gives your pup the option to have their head out to look around, or snuggle up inside to take a nap while you run errands. There are several stylish shoulder bag options that look like a regular tote when your dog isn’t using it. Make sure it brings a strap to clip to your dog’s collar so that they are secured. The main downside is it can hurt your shoulders if your pup is close to the 15-20lb range, so definitely ease into it.
A stroller is a great choice if you don’t want to carry any weight on your shoulders or back, or if you want to take your dog to a restaurant with you. They can sit in the stroller and be at the same level of the table, which does help some dogs remain calm throughout the meal. If you live in a city, you’ll want to opt for a durable stroller with tire wheels since you’ll be walking long distances with your stroller on sidewalks.
A plane travel carrier would be really uncomfortable for daily use, so we’ll cover this on our travel series.
You should offer your pup water at least once an hour when you’re out with them, and more often if they are walking in the summer heat. Two ways to give them water:
Always bring a small blanket or towel so your pup has somewhere to sit. Especially if you’ll be outside, the floor can get quite hot in the summer and the towel will protect your pup’s paws and belly while they wait for you. There are some lightweight options that can help keep your pup cool, but a non-fleece towel works well.
The summer heat can wreak havoc on your pup’s paws. Similar to our feet, paws are sensitive and can crack and blister easily. To prevent damage to your dog’s paws, apply a high-quality paw wax to your dog’s paws before they go out. This acts as a layer of protection against the heat and coarse pavement (or sand!). There’s a few products to keep in mind:
We love products from The Natural Dog Company. All their products are natural, vegan and organic so you can rest assured they don’t contain any potential toxins for your dog. When choosing a product for paw protection, you want to read through the ingredients thoroughly for any potential toxins. It's common that your dog will lick some of it off so it should be safe when ingested in small quantities.
Dogs are prone to sunburn just like humans! When taking your pup out with you this summer, make sure to give them sun protection to prevent sunburn and lower their risk of sun-related medical issues like skin cancer. Read our guide on doggie sun exposure and sunscreen here. Before you head out, use a sunscreen formulated for dogs on the spots most likely to be exposed and hurt from the sun, such as nose, ear tips, belly, groin, and inner thighs.