It's the dog days of summer and nothing would feel better to our pooches then a good bath and spray down from our garden hose! You get your supplies ready, have your faithful friend at your side and turn the hose on to soak them down. Your dog jumps back as the water covers its back but can't get away as you have a firm grip on its leash, some dogs are pretty skittish around high force water, right? You go about soaking your dog and a few minutes later, you lather and rinse, enjoying the cooled water on your hands.
But...a few days later you notice your dog is sensitive over its back and then the hair starts to fall out, followed by very "angry" red skin and eventually a glassy scar. Upon examination and testing from your friendly veterinarian, it is discovered the your dog has suffered severe burns to its back! HOW??
After multiple cases similar to the one discribed above were presented to the Texas A&M's Department of Pathology, a field experiment was performed to test the theory that these dogs could have been burned by scalding water from a garden hose. But we're in Minnesota, right? Well, the experiment was conducted by filling two garden hoses with water, one black and one green, and then leaving them out in the sun for 2 hours on a day where the temp went from 89-94 degrees. The water collected after the two hours had reached a temperature of 120 degrees! At that temperature, it is possible to have 2nd or 3rd degree burns which may not present until several days after the incident.
With our days lately being in the high 80's , 90's and even over 100 degrees we all need to take caution when using our garden hoses, to bath dogs, fill kiddy pools and just to splash around in. The best thing to do to prevent these serious burns is to keep your hose in a cool place and if that is not possible, make sure you run your hose for a minute before you spray it on a pet or person, always testing on your hand first.
Keep cool and stay safe!