Heatwave: how to keep yourself - and your pets - cool

4:45 pm on 28 January 2019

With record breaking temperatures, officials have issued health warnings, but what else can you do to keep cool in the first heatwave of 2019?

The official advice is to stay inside, drink lots of water and limit alcohol, but there are also paddling pools, cold showers and the Kiwi classic - ice blocks. Megan Whelan asked social media for its best advice.

One particularly useful piece of advice is a bowl of cold water or bag of ice - or an "ice block/chilly bin cooler blue thing tied to the front of it in a laundry delicates bag" - in front of a strategically placed fan. Just don't go opening the freezer too often.

This is also useful for particularly "super floofy" pets.

(Those same puppies seem to be doing OK.)

Eating ice cubes is also an option for the dogs. (Or chunks of cucumber straight from the fridge for guinea pigs.)

(This is Paddington. He's not eating ice, but he is pretty adorable.)

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All tired out from his walk

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Tara Sutherland offers this advice: "cooling mats for the dogs and bandanas soaked in cold water and then frozen."

Bogie the Hammer keeps cool with a frozen bandana.

Bogie the Hammer keeps cool with a frozen bandana. Photo: Supplied / Tara Sutherland

Being able to afford air conditioning or a heat pump is another theme of the social media advice.

If air conditioning isn't an option, then maybe leaving the house to head somewhere cool is - shopping malls, cinemas, museums are all usually pretty chilly.

Closing curtains and opening windows seems to help - and is great for those of us who like being shut in dark cool(ish) rooms.

Ice cream, ice blocks, and running under the hose -or at least getting into water - are all good options.

If at all possible, try not to work. (Granted, this may not be the most practical advice.)

And if all those ideas fail - complaining about the weather is a time-honoured tradition.

Keep the advice coming - because the heat isn't going to stop any time soon.