Activities For Dogs In Montana On Hot Days

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Introduction

Montana is a wild place to be. Though the winters are long and frigid, the summers can be brutally hot and smokey, especially in some of the towns in Eastern Montana. Montana is also a dog-friendly state. Many of its residents use dogs to work farms and ranches and even more see their canine companions as members of the family. These dog owners know they need to have activities for dogs in Montana on hot days, and they are often prepared with ideas that get their dogs out and keep them cool.

Visit an Alpine Lake

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Hot Day
Free
Normal
3 - 6 hrs
Items needed
Leash
Bowl and water
Water toys or tennis ball
Activity description
Montana was named for its beautiful mountain ranges and views, and most savvy Montana dog owners know that crisp and cool alpine lakes are abundant at the base of these mountains. When the temps start to rise, it's time to take your dog up into the cool mountain air and find a refreshing mountain lake to jump into. These mountain lakes are often frozen until July, when the temperatures really start to rise. They are fed by snowmelt in the winter, and provide relief on the hottest days of the summer. Your dog will jump right in to chase a ball or even a fish, and they will relish the crisp, cool water on their skin.
Step
1
Find your lake
Take a look at a map or local trail guide to locate a few different Alpine lakes near you. If you are close to a mountain range, chances are there are several. Some are remote and may take a day or two to find, and some are just a few miles up a trail. Pick a lake that matches your dog's ability and energy level. Remember, the lake is supposed to be refreshing, so you don't want your dog to over-exert themselves just getting to the lake.
Step
2
Plan for fun
Plan ahead to make sure you have everything you need for your dog and yourself. Even if the destination is a lake, you still want to have water available to your dog if there isn't any along the trail. Bring a water bowl and extra water to keep them hydrated. Bring a tennis ball or a water toy to throw for them in the water, and bring extra snacks, After hiking in the heat and swimming all day, your dog will need some food to help recharge.
Step
3
Alpine lake swimming
Once your dog sees the lake, chances are they will want to take off and jump right in. Make sure you know what's around you before letting them go. You don't want to startle other people or animals. When they plunge in, take a moment to laugh at their silly joy, then break out the tennis ball. You can also use a stick. Your dog will be so excited to swim and play. Throw the ball several times until they get tired. If you're hot, you can even join them in the water for a romp. Alpine lakes are the perfect escape from hot, summer days.
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Fly Fishing

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Hot Day
Moderate
Normal
3 hrs
Items needed
Dog life jacket
Blanket
Fly fishing gear
Activity description
Montana is known for blue ribbon fisheries and some of the most beautiful stretches of river in the country. People flock from all over the world to cast a fly into these crisp and cool waters. Fly fishing is one of the best activities for dogs in Montana on hot days because they can sit by the river, keep their paws cool, and hang out with their owners. Some even try to catch fish of their own. Many Montana fly fishermen bring their four-legged fishing buddies to the river. These dogs are trained to relax and stay clear of the fly rod, and enjoy each time their owners get a bite.
Step
1
Ground rules
Before you take your dog to the river, make sure they know how to behave along the shore. You don't want to have to correct your dog when you have a fish on the line. Fly fishing is a relaxing sport, and you don't want your dog to splash or bother other fishermen, or bark and chase the fish away. Spend some time along the river to practice how far they should stay from your rod and casting, and teach them where to stay cool when you're fishing.
Step
2
Set up for success
While you're getting your rod, tying your flies, and finding a spot where the fish are biting, make sure your dog has everything they need. One of the most critical considerations is shade for your dog. Even though the river is right there, they shouldn't be left out exposed in the sun. Find a spot with shade trees or cover they can hide under the sun. Make sure you bring enough food if you are going to be out for a while, or bring a rawhide to keep them occupied.
Step
3
River time
When you are ready and the temperature gets hot, grab your fishing pole and your pup and head to the river. Putting a little thought into your outing will help your dog be the perfect fishing partner. They will cheer you on as you reel in the fish, and quietly enjoy the cooling waters of the river. When you finish, be sure to reward their good behavior by playing in the river with them. Let them chase a stick or a ball and swim to retrieve it. Fly fishing with your dog is the perfect way to spend a Montana heatwave.
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Evening Walk

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Hot Day
Free
Easy
30 min
Items needed
Leash
Activity description
In Montana, the summer days can feel oppressive to you and your dog, but the evenings are often much cooler. One of the easiest ways to beat the heat is to adjust your walking schedule and head out later in the evening just before bed. There are lots of advantages to this time of night. Evening walks will allow you to relax and turn off electronics before bed, and you'll be able to catch the spectacular summer sunsets that often don't even start until 8:30 or 9:00 pm. You should still let your dog out to go to the bathroom when you get home from work, but save the long walks for the evening.
Step
1
Adjust your schedule
Adjusting the schedule from a walk right when you get home might be tough for your dog at first. Start to shift your walks before it gets too hot. Slowly changing the time of the walk will help your dog adjust and understand what to expect. When you shift walk time by 15 minutes from 8:15 to 8:30 at night, it won't be as noticeable as if you make a big leap from 5:00 to 9:00. Plan ahead, and you won't have any rough spots in your new schedule.
Step
2
Watch the weather
When it gets hot in Montana in the summer, evening thunderstorms become the norm. Those these storms bring in torrential downpours and thunder and lightning; they usually don't last too long. They can come on quick and catch you unprepared if you haven't looked at the weather. Make sure you check the local report and radar to find your best window for walking.
Step
3
Enjoy the cool evenings
You might discover that walking later at night in the cool evenings is preferable to right after work. There will most likely be fewer people on the trail, and those who are out will be less hurried. You can enjoy the sounds of birds singing in the evening and catch some of the cool Montana breezes that kick up when the sun goes down, even on the hottest days.
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More Fun Ideas...

Indoor Hide and Seek

Look for inside activities for dogs in Montana on hot days if you have an air conditioner. Hide and seek is the perfect game to tire out your dog while staying cool.

Summer Sprinklers

When the Montana heat wave hits your family, break out the garden sprinkler and have fun running through the water. Your dog will love chasing the kids around the yard and through the cooling waters of the sprinkler.

Conclusion

Finding activities for dogs in Montana on hot days is easy if you know where to look. All you need to do is head to the mountains or the rivers, the outdoor wonders that Montana is famous for. When you're playing outside with your pup on hot days, make sure they always have access to water and are not overheating. Some dogs will run themselves to death on mountain trails, so it's up to you to keep an eye out. For the brutally hot days, you can stay inside and play games to keep cool and have fun.