Training in the heat

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In previous blogs I wrote about training your dog during a polar vortex. Today, let’s discuss what we do when it gets really hot outside?

There is a lot to consider and plan when one is training retrievers, whether you are training a single dog or a pro with a string of dogs. One thing which has been on peoples minds lately is the high temperatures.

Each week on Sunday, I plan out training goals for each dog and training locations. However, every morning I also check the weather to make sure it is satisfactory for what I have planned on that day.

When it is hot and humid, like it has been lately, my whole schedule can change. I start training earlier in the day, trying to beat the heat. Also, I tend to do more water work. Be cautious, however, as not all water is equal. If the pond is shallow, the water can heat up and it can be like putting your dog in a hot tub, which obviously in not good.

Here are a few things you can do to help your dog when working in the heat:

  • Monitor your dog throughout the training session for signs of them getting too hot and make sure they have access to fresh clean water.

  • Shorten your training sessions.

  • Make their marks simpler and shorter.

  • If doing land work, it is good to have a pond nearby to let them jump in and cool off ever so often.

If it is too hot outside, you can always do some obedience training inside in the air conditioning. Or just take the day off and let the dogs rest. Lastly, if I know that it is supposed to get hot later in the week, I sometimes do some extra training session earlier in the week when it is cooler.

Until next time, happy retrieving.

Steve Smith