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For many, Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start to summer. It can be a time when families go for their first camping weekend of the year. Or get their summer cottage ready for the season. Or participate in a big family gathering with planned activities and a barbecue.

But for some families, Memorial Day weekend will be celebrated differently this year. Most likely there will not be the normal types of traveling to those fun places or those big family gatherings. Instead, it may be just another quiet weekend at home.

Does your family have special activities that you usually do on this weekend? Or special gatherings? For us, we always stay at home. But now that I think about it, this is true for any holiday weekend. Because these are some of the busiest times for my dad.

You see, we take care of the pets of other families when they go away for their vacations. My mom and dad own a boarding kennel so this is where dogs, cats, and small pets come for their vacations! Which means we always need to be here. But we still get to do fun things like barbecues or get-togethers with friends!

I love playing outside . . . as long as it isn’t too hot!

So with this weekend being the unofficial start to the summer, it means our weather is getting nicer and the temperatures are getting much warmer. With these changes in the weather there need to be more precautions in place when my mom and I go out. She wants to make sure I am safe! 

Do you like the hot sunshiny days of summer? Lazy summer days can be fun but my favorite time is the winter when I can play in the snow! My mom likes the cooler fall days best of all because it is the most comfortable for her. What is your favorite time of the year? 

Here in Maine, we don’t have as many of those extremely hot and humid days like there are in some parts of the country. But we do need to be prepared and ready in case we do have to go places on these types of days. We can’t always just stay at home! 

Although whenever possible my mom does choose to stay home if the day is very hot or humid. This works best for me, too, because I don’t really like it when it is uncomfortably hot. But sometimes my mom has appointments scheduled. And on some days we need to go do errands. Or do fun things like meet friends for lunch.

Wearing my boots and ready to go!

When we do need to go out on these extremely hot or humid days we use precautions so that we are safe. Whenever possible we try to stay in the shade. And even better we try to stay inside where it is air-conditioned. 

My mom always brings along some water in case I need a drink. In addition to plain water, she will often bring coconut ice cubes. Remember how I told you about these in The way I drink water! post?

The water bottle that my mom has on her chair for me!

Another important part of staying safe is protecting my paws from getting burned while walking on the hot pavement. Have you ever walked across some hot pavement, like a driveway, with your bare feet? The sun warms up these types of surfaces very quickly. 

My mom has a couple of ways of protecting my paws. I’m not a huge fan of either but tolerate both ways because I know that it is for my safety. This will be a bit repetitive since I told you about both in Protecting my paws! post.

One way is with a protective type wax known as Musher’s Secret. It was originally produced to protect the paws of sled dogs during the winter months. Over time it has become a year-round option for protecting dog’s paws. 

I use Musher’s Secret in both the summer and winter. My mom rubs the wax onto the pads of my paws. It kind of tickles when she is applying it. I try hard to stay still but sometimes I wiggle just a little bit.

The other way to protect my paws is with dog boots. Yes, they do make boots for dogs! There are many styles and colors available. My mom has tried a variety of these styles with me and has quite a collection. She said they should have shoe stores for dogs so we could try them on for size and fit before we buy! 

A few of my many boots!

Some of the boots fit better than others and some are more comfortable so I definitely have my preferences. I know it won’t surprise you to hear that my mom listens to me so that she knows which boots I prefer! 

The other important factor is my mom being able to easily get them on my paws. I hold very still and am cooperative but her hands don’t always work very well. 

A comfortable pair of my summer boots!

We both prefer the Musher’s Secret because it is easier to use but sometimes I need the extra protection with the boots. Most importantly my mom chooses the one that is appropriate for the particular day. 

I hope you and your family found fun things to do this holiday weekend. And made new memories to cherish during this unprecedented time of COVID-19. You never know, there may be new things you did this year that will become annual traditions on this holiday weekend.

We spent a quiet weekend at home. Just me, my mom, my dad, and my sisters! We had a barbecue. My dad mowed the lawn. And my mom participated in The Lemonade Conference that I told you about in my Disappointing changes to our plans! post.

And you know what else? My dad had more time to play with us because there were fewer animals in the kennel for him to care for. This was because fewer people are traveling right now. My mom tells me we should always look for the silver lining!