For many of us the summer months signifies long road-trips and extended vacation time. With the heat settling in across the country, our crew here sees more and more requests about how to travel with your best furry friend – so much so that we decided to turn to the experts, who can give us a look at how you can best enjoy the next few months with your dog.

We’ve known about Gunner Kennels for a bit now – as a leading manufacturer of pet crates, their inaugural product (with strength-rated straps) made waves when it earned the distinction as The Center For Pet Safety’s first “5 Star Crash Test Rating” for a pet travel crate. Since then they’ve put their kennels to the test in all kinds of situations (see the crazy crash videos here) and won the trust of dedicated dog owners all over the country.

So, without further ado – check out their simple steps you can take to shield your dog from overheating this season… plus how the G1™ works for your dog in the heat.  

Tips For Traveling With Your Pet This Summer

By Gunner Kennels

Man’s Best Friend is embedded into everything we do at Gunner Kennels – if we’re hitting the road, we’re taking our dogs with us.

The idea for Gunner Kennels was inspired by a labrador retriever named Gunner, after one road trip nearly went awry. Owner Addison Edmonds had always felt uneasy traveling with him in traditional plastic crates – and that day convinced him to make a commitment to design the safest, most durable crate possible for his best friend.

Since that morning, Gunner Kennels has helped keep thousands of pets safe on the road – because every detail of this crate is designed and tested in real conditions, for the invested dog owner.

Below are a few of our tips for keeping your dog safe during the summer – and how our G1™ crate works for your dog in the heat, even on the road.

10 Tips To Keep Your Dog Cool(er) This Summer

1.     Obviously, the number one rule is to keep your dog hydrated with water.  It’s a no brainer, but we had to say it. On road trips stop regularly to make sure your pet has enough water. And make sure it’s clean – some dogs won’t drink something that’s been stagnant for long.

2.     We never recommend leaving your dog inside the car without proper airflow during the summer months. Even in the shade a car can be 10, 20, even 30 degrees hotter than it is outside.

3.     If you’re leaving your dog outside, always make sure you provide shade for your dog, and show your dog where his/her (non-glass) water bowl is in that shade. Please don’t tie your dog up anywhere in the blazing sun.

4.     There was information flying around a few years ago that ice is bad for your dog. Not true. Adding a few cubes (being mindful of the size) only helps cool your pet down. On road trips, a couple frozen water bottles in the crate isn’t a bad idea either.

5.     Applying rubbing alcohol on your dog's pads is said to help bring their temperature down. It cools as it evaporates, acting as a body cooling agent. Ice packs under the armpits also works.

6.     Exercise your dog in the early morning or evening hours. Dogs cool off primarily through panting, not perspiring, so it takes longer to bring their temperature down than it does yours.

7.     If your dog has the capability to swim, it’s the best way to exercise in the heat.

8.     Watch out for hot pavement. In the summer months, it can badly burn your dog's paw pads, and it’s a heightened source of heat. If you can’t leave your bare foot on the asphalt for longer than 10 seconds, consider taking the dog out when it’s cooler.

9.     Check with your trainer or your vet before shaving your dog. If your dog spends a lot of time outdoors, cutting their coat down may be worth it. But coats can also offer a barrier between biting bugs, mosquitos and the sun – plus the undercoat of double-coated dogs actually helps with airflow across their skin. That’s why keeping your dog groomed and unmatted can help its natural cooling system.

10. Finally, monitor your dog's’ temperature if you are worried. A good rule of thumb when measuring your dog's temperature is that it shouldn’t be allowed to get over 104 degrees. See heatstroke signs to watch for here.

5 Ways Gunner Kennels® Protects In Heat

●     The G1™ series features 10 side windows, a vented door, and three rear windows. The crates allow for ample airflow, and proper ventilation was a major consideration for both designs. More on that here.

●     The G1™ kennel is double-wall rotomolded, and that extra layer of material is proven to better guard against UV rays and humidity. 

●     The rubber feet on the G1™ crate not only stabilizes it, it also raises it off the ground – limiting heat transmission from hot surfaces.

●     Purchasing the Seadek Kennel Pad accessory – originally designed for marine boats – adds an additional layer of protection, helping bring temps down inside the crate.

●     Gunner Kennels conducted temperature tests on a hot day last summer using the G1™ kennel, and other crates in the market. See how what the results looked like here (note: you definitely want to check these out).

●     In Summer 2017, Gunner Kennels is releasing a high-powered fan that will substantially increase airflow within the crate. 

Finally, the most important consideration when traveling with your dog should always be safety. And for that – well we’ve got you covered.

To learn more about Gunner Kennels and their game-changing pet safety products, go to