Dog Park Shade

Dog Park Shade

Many facilities provide outdoor kennel space for dogs even if they have adequate indoor space. Some kennels or boarding homes only have outdoor space to house their animals. Most dog parks offer very little in the way of shade from the heat. In all these cases, a shade structure outdoors could help these dogs stay cool during the hot season.

Why do dogs need a shady space?

Our canine pals need a break from the heat more often than we do. It’s a common misconception that dogs can handle the heat as much or better than humans. Here are a few ways in which your pup can become overheated and need time in the shade.

1. Protection from hot surfaces.

Unlike ourselves, dogs do not get to wear shoes. You can imagine on hot surfaces such as concrete or asphalt how hot temperatures can escalate. On a blistering summer day, a dog’s foot pads can easily get scorched and become very uncomfortable. Try finding a way to walk your furry friend on grass as much as possible.

2. Avoid overheating.

Keep in mind that dogs don’t always want to stop playing just because you do. Learn the signs of an overheated dog which may start with excessive drooling, panting, or heavy breathing.

3. Dogs can get sunburn.

Dogs without hair (whether naturally or from a vet procedure) or dogs with short hair such as Great Danes, Beagles, or Foxhounds can get sunburn like humans with prolonged sun exposure. In fact, many breeds can get sunburned, but dogs with more hair have added protection and can endure the outdoors for longer periods. 

Shade Structures for Dogs

What types of shades would work well at a dog kennel? How about at a dog park? The most obvious choice is a larger shade structure to allow both pets and their owners to stay out of the sun. Due to its fabric nature, a shade structure also can offer better airflow underneath the canopy. Some parks have steel shelters instead, which is fine in winter months but provides less airflow than a shade with a fabric canopy in warmer weather.

Type of Shade

Sail shades, square shades, and rectangular shades are the most common choices for pet parks. Square shade structures usually range from 10’ x 10’ to 38’ x 38’ and can be placed over concrete or turf. Rectangular shades range from 13’ x 20’ to over 40’ in width. Superior Shade carries over 25 sizes and can create custom options as well. All of these structures can be made in 8’, 10’, or 12’ eave height.

Shade Fabric and Post Material

Superior Shade uses fabric that is 80% water repellent with UV stabilization that helps to resist fading in the sun. Our shades are made of high-density polyethylene and block up to 99% of dangerous UV rays depending on color. This fabric breathes and will allow warmer air to escape which helps keep things cool below the canopy. This fabric is Rachel-knitted which helps to prevent fraying over time. Shade structures 34’ and larger come with Kevlar reinforced corners.

Steel posts are most common in the industry for support. Superior offers steel tubing that complies with ASTM standards and is coated with a 3-millimeter zinc-rich, rust-inhibiting primer and a 3-millimeter powder coat paint. This balance helps to prevent paint from flaking.

Dog Park Shade Placement

Installing a shade structure is done in one of three ways. Surface installation is performed when the client already has a concrete slab in place. A steel base plate that complies with ASTM A-36 standard is used to anchor the shade post to the concrete. Sub-surface installation is when a base plate is used below the surface to provide stability but with a different appearance above ground. Embedded installation is performed in open spaces when no concrete slab is present. This in-ground placement is done with poured concrete support footers, which are most common at dog park locations.