Summer is upon us, and as the weather heats up, many people head to the beach to cool off. You can have an incredible beach day with your canine companion as long as you do a little extra planning.

To help owners have the best beach experience possible with their dogs, the American Kennel Club offers the following safety tips:

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— Bring plenty of water. Be sure to bring plenty of fresh water for your dog to keep him from drinking the ocean water. The high sodium content of ocean water along with other contaminants can be harmful to your dog’s health. Having fresh water on hand will keep him hydrated and decrease his chances of getting sick.

— Provide shade. If you plan to be at the beach for an extended period of time, be sure to have an umbrella with you. This will ensure that your dog has a place to get out of the sun and rest.

— Apply sunscreen. Dogs that are hairless or have a short or light-colored coat are especially vulnerable to the sun. It is always wise to apply a dog-friendly sunblock to make sure your four-legged-friend is protected from the sun’s harmful rays.

— Rinse off your dog after play. Rinse your dog off as soon as he is done playing. Your dog may love to roll around in the sand at the beach, but the sand and saltwater can irritate him. Rinsing him off sooner rather than later can help avoid rashes on your pup.