Check the heat of the pavement before you walk the dog

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OMAHA, Neb, -- When it really gets hot, we're always advised to check on our pets. But the hot air isn’t the only threat.

The Nebraska Humane Society's Pam Wiese says that when the temperatures soar you also need to keep track of how hot the pavement gets.

Not only is it crucial that you provide your pets with shade and fresh drinking water but it's also important that you're aware of the rising temperature of the cement and asphalt around your home and public spaces.

Cement and asphalt temperatures rise much more quickly than some would expect. On a 77-degree day the temperature of asphalt has been recorded as high as 125, while on an 87-degree day, the temperature of asphalt has been recorded as high as 143 degrees Fahrenheit.

These temperatures can cause your dog's paws to burn in as little as 60 seconds. To protect your pet, consider the following options:

  1. Follow the 7-second rule. Before heading out for a walk, place the back of your hand firmly against the concrete or asphalt for 7 seconds. If you experience burning or discomfort, it's too hot for your pup's paws.
  2. Consider this: if the concrete is simply too hot to safely walk your dog, try finding a large grassy area such as a dog park or your backyard to let your dog burn off some energy.
  3. Likewise, check to make sure that if you are taking him to a festival, farmers market or other activity, there is an area of shade or grass that won't burn his paws.

Several companies sell wax balms that are designed to help protect your dog's paws from the heat and cold. And booties can be helpful in summer too but remember his paws need to be protected so if you're not sure the area will be pet friendly you might want to leave him behind.