Quick Answer:

It depends how hot is ‘hot’, and also the size, breed, age and health of your dog. If in doubt, stick to walks in the early morning and later in the evenings and substitute in some non-strenuous brain games instead – if it’s really hot, skipping a walk or two won’t harm your dog. Make the most of Summer showers if your dog doesn’t mind the rain – they can be really refreshing!

If you HAVE to go out in the sun, always carry water – we love these Long Paws Bottles. Stick to the shade, walk on grass or dirt rather than pavements, don’t over-exert and keep an eye on your dog for signs of heatstroke.


I need to get something off my chest… Do not leave your dog in a car in warm weather. Even if it’s only for ‘5 minutes’. Even if you’ve cracked the window a bit. It still gets fucking hot. Don’t do it. Dogs die like this, and they suffer first. Don’t be a dick.

If you’re still not convinced that this is a real danger, take a look at this video of Ciara the vet and Kevin and Dave, Butternut Box Founders, who locked themselves in a hot car to see what it’s like for dogs.

If you do see a dog locked in a car in hot weather, take a look at the RSPCA’s guide as to how to deal with it correctly, so that you don’t get into any legal trouble.

Full Answer:

There are a number of factors to consider when thinking about walking your dog in hot weather:

Hot Pavements

Hot pavements can lead to burned, blistered paws. As a general rule, put the back of your hand to the floor, if you can’t hold your hand there for 10-15 seconds, it’s too hot for your pupper to walk on.


In terms of heatstroke, the point at which temperatures become unsafe depends on the breed, age and weight of your dog. Up to about 20°C is ok for most dogs. 21°C or above can start becoming dangerous for large dogs, 23°C for medium and small dogs. Obese, senior, puppy and brachycephalic (flat-muzzled dogs such as Frenchies, Pugs, Boxers) dogs all add to the risk.


Dog Size






15° 60° 1 1 1
18° 65° 1 1 2
21° 70° 2 2 3
23° 75° 3 3 3
26° 80° 3 3 4
29° 85° 4 4 5
32° 90° 5 5 5
1 No evidence of risk: Have fun outside!
2 Risk is unlikely: Have fun outside, but be careful.
3 Potentially unsafe, depending on breed. Keep an eye on dog when outside.
4 Dangerous weather developing. Use caution.
5 Potentially life-threatening heat. Avoid outdoor activity.
+1 if obese
+1 if brachycephalic breed
+1 if less than 6 months, or a senior dog
-1 if in the shade

Dog Walkers & Doggy Daycares

If you use of daycares and walkers, make sure they know how to look after your dog in this weather, and what to do if anything goes wrong. See more in How to Find a Good Dog Walker.

Extra Bits

  • If you have room in your garden, set up a paddling pool for your dog to play in.
  • Freeze food in a Kong or K9 Connectable to chill your dog out.
  • Soak rope toys in low-salt stock and freeze, for a stress-relieving, cooling chew for your dog.
  • Get your dog a cooling coat, or soak a towel in cold water and put over their back.
  • Make Frozen Pupcakes for your dog.
  • Frozen carrots or just ice cubes also make fun toys / treats for a hot dog.

Related Articles

Will My Pup Enjoy the Local Dog Show?, Pug with Happy Owner having won at a Dog Show

Will My Pup Enjoy the Local Dog Show?

Not every dog will enjoy the heat, the crowds, or all the strange dogs. Make sure that you're taking your dog's needs into account when attending events like this.

When NOT to Walk Your Dog, French Bulldog who's had enough walking, Summer, too hot to walk, dog walking

When NOT to Walk Your Dog

While we're not advocating NOT walking your dog, there are times when skipping a walk is the right thing to do.

The Importance of Dog First Aid, Cuddly Toy Dog with Bandages on

The Importance of Dog First Aid

Would you know what to do if your dog got injured? We hear from Dog First Aid why it's so important for all dog owners to learn.

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Stressed?, Dachshund with one paw raised, Unsure, Stressed, Dog Behaviour, Dog Body Language

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Stressed?

Dogs do a lot to try and tell us when they're unhappy with a situation, unfortunately we're not very good at listening... find out how to spot some of the signs

My Puppy Won’t Pee Outside, Basset Hound puppy peeing on grass

My Puppy Won’t Pee Outside

Puppies peeing inside is a very common issue for new puppy owners. Find out why this happens and how to tackle it correctly.

How to walk your dog, French Bulldogs on leads on a walk

How to Walk Your Dog

Walking a dog is simple right? Yes. But most people are thinking about it wrong, and so are doing it wrong. Find out how to give your dog a more rewarding walk.

How to Find a Good Dog Walker, French Bulldog in grass with Dog Walker

How to Find a Good Dog Walker

Whether your dog is an office dog or a stay at home dog, you may still need to use a dog walker from time to time, make sure that you're using a good one.

Walking Equipment 02: Leads, Beagle on walk wearing a lead, retractable lead, fixed-length lead, dog walking

Walking Equipment 02: Leads

In the second part of this series, we look at your options for choosing leads for your dog. Fixed-Length vs Retractable.

My Dog Is a Dick (And That’s Ok), Kimber the beagle, howling in the park

Recipe: Frozen Pupcakes

A good way to help your dog stay cool in the summer is with frozen treats - find out how to make these yummy frozen pupcakes

Walking Equipment 01: Collar vs Harness, Dalmatians wearing Perfect Fit Harnesses and Collars, Dog Walking, Dog Training

Walking Equipment 01: Collar vs Harness

In the first of a 2-part series, we look at the best walking equipment for your dog. In this part, we look at collars vs harnesses.

How to Run a Dog-Friendly Dog Show

Not everything that’s fun for us is fun for dogs. If you’re planning a dog show, find out how to make sure it’s enjoyed by everyone involved.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This