How hot is too hot for your dog’s paws?

Paws can burn in just one minute when asphalt eclipses 140 degrees

Paws can burn quickly in heat like we are currently experiencing (KSAT12 2024)

We all appreciate “comfortable” weather, including our best four-legged buddies. Unfortunately, we don’t see that too often around these parts. This week is going to be particularly hot, so here are some numbers and reminders when it comes to how quickly dog’s paws can burn.


According to the American Kennel Club, 85 degrees is a good benchmark for when it becomes too hot for an outing with your dog. Artificial grass, pavement, and especially asphalt can become dangerous for the pads on your dog’s paws. This is even more true for puppies with sensitive, young paws. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, by the time the air temperature reaches 86 degrees, asphalt temperatures can approach 135 degrees.

It gets even worse when temperatures reach the mid-90s. Even grass can reach temperatures above 100 degrees, while concrete sidewalks can rise to 120 degrees. At this point, asphalt is jumping to near 140 degrees. This will most certainly cause damage to paws within a matter of minutes. A good, easy way to decide if it’s too hot to go for a walk is to put your hand to the ground. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog.

The American Kennel Club recommends walking your dog often in cooler weather. This helps toughen up the paws for when hotter weather rolls around. You’ll want to keep their pads moisturized, too. You can even purchase shoes for your dog that will protect their paws.

My dog, Penny. (Copyright 2024 by KSAT - All rights reserved.)


Not only do you need to worry about the feet, but overall heat illness is a concern, too. Just like with us humans, dogs can have heat strokes. Excess drool and lethargy can be signs that your dog is suffering a heat illness. You’ll want to get emergency help if this occurs.

Overall, humans and canines alike will want to take it easy in this heat. Near triple-digit temperatures are expected into the weekend.

About the Author

Justin Horne is a meteorologist and reporter for KSAT 12 News. When severe weather rolls through, Justin will hop in the KSAT 12 Storm Chaser to safely bring you the latest weather conditions from across South Texas. On top of delivering an accurate forecast, Justin often reports on one of his favorite topics: Texas history.

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