It’s been a tough week for those of us who are used to the cooler temperatures the UK usually has to offer.
The heatwave hasn’t just been difficult on us (hello, sleepless nights) – it has also been a challenge for our furry friends.
Dog walks have had to take place at dawn or dusk and now the stormy weather has caused some animals to hide away until it all passes.
That’s why actor, Gemma Atkinson, 35, put out a timely warning to people with toddlers and pets, encouraging parents to “be vigilant” about how much their children are crowding their pets during the hot – and now stormy – weather.
In an Instagram post, Atkinson wrote: “Having to be even more vigilant today with Mia around the boys! Like us in this heat they are shorter tempered and just cant be bothered. Last thing they need or want is to feel smothered.
“She loves stroking them but obviously I’m mindful they have to enjoy it too. She’s never alone with them, not only for her sake but for theirs as well.
“They were here first and our home is their territory. I know they are calmer when I’m around with Mia.
“They seem to rest more when I’m in the room. Especially Ollie, he’s getting older now and sometimes I can tell he just wants to be alone. The only problem so far is that Mia hates me and screams when I won’t allow her to drink out of their bowl with them. I know, I know, what a cruel mum I am.”
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For many people in the UK, the heatwave has made way for some rather stormy weather, which can also affect our pets’ moods.
According to the Blue Cross, dogs will show they’re anxious by panting excessively, drooling, shaking, yawning and putting their tail between their legs. They may also pace around, whine, bark and drink more.
Simply giving your pet space away from the children is one way to ensure they don’t get agitated by excessive heat or storms.
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Fans were quick to praise the sensible mum’s Instagram post.
One wrote: “Such a good post, I was taught to respect animals. Leave them alone when they’re eating, don’t tease them etc. You’re so right about the heat too, it makes us all short tempered!”
“Well done. So sensible, Gemma. We can never 100% trust a dog and baby if their [sic] not used to it.”