We're on track to experience one of the hottest summers again (it's not politics, people... it's science) and humans aren't the only ones suffering. See your dog vibrating with his tongue fully extended over there? He's not a fan of this heat, and the humidity doesn't help either. Here are a few ways to help Fido keep cool (and alive) during these hellish heat waves.

1) Walk Seldom and Swim Often

My Bernese Mountain Dog Can't be the only one who refuses to walk farther than a block in 80+ degree weather. And I don't blame her; the second you start hiking up the slightest incline, your back practically slides off your skeleton. Rather than getting exercise in through walking, toss your pooch in the car (gently) and take off to a local watering hole. We like to frequent East End Beach after 5pm. Whether or not your dog enjoys paddling, she'll probably love to drink in that ocean breeze and tip toe through the water's edge at the very least.

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2) Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate

Keep. That. Water dish. Full. And allow frequent potty breaks. You know all that slobber dripping of your dog's panting tongue? It's gotta be replenished somehow! For extra cool excitement, see if your pup enjoys nomming ice cubes or frozen jerky treats. Mine sure does!

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3) Leave Them At Home

Unless every part of your outing includes water dishes and shady spots, leave Fido at home. I know it's tempting to crank the windows and stash him in the car while you run in for ice cream and beer, but even wide open cars get crazy hot, crazy fast. In the very best case scenario, you have a magical TARDIS car that somehow stays cool in the sunshine, but it still gets broken into by a good samaritan who has your dog's best interests at heart. Don't risk it. Leave him at home with the fan on high or the AC cranked up.

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4) Accessorize Like a Boss

It's helpful to find cool (and cold) swag to help your bestie keep from overheating. I recommend a cooling bandana (get it wet and it wicks away heat for hours), a cool gel bed (both pictured below), or just stick damp t-shirts in the freezer and playing doggy dress-up if you'd rather go the DIY route.

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5) Provide Emotional Support

Winter is coming, just keep chanting that. Your dog will pick up on the soothing sentiment if not for the actual meaning of the words. Winter is coming, and it will surely be a long and cold one.

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