Caring for all animals

Click Here for Current Specials

   Four Paws Animal Clinic

Serving Nevada City and Grass Valley and More!

521A Searls Ave., Nevada City, CA 95959


Dr. Susan Murphy

Keeping your dog cool this Summer


Summer Dog


Did you know dogs and cats can get sunburned? Or that short-nosed dog breeds have more trouble cooling down through panting? Or that shaving your dog's fur coat may be more harmful than not?

Summer heat and sunshine are serious issues for our dogs and cats, which depend on us to keep them protected.

For example, did you know dogs and cats can get sunburned? Or that short-nosed dog breeds have more trouble cooling down through panting? Or that shaving your dog's coat may be more harmful than not? Here are a few tips to consider to keep your pet comfortable in the summer heat.

  • Sunburn: Animals need sun protection on their sensitive areas such as the tips of their ears, their noses and other areas exposed to sunlight. Pets with pink skin or light-colored coats can be vulnerable. Staffordshire Terriers, Boxers, Bull Terriers, German Shorthaired Pointers, and Chinese Crested are among the breeds prone to sunburn. Apply pet-friendly sunscreen—not zinc oxide-based treatments, which are toxic—about half an hour before exposure.
  • Panting is cooling: It's well known that dogs and cats don't sweat. They eliminate heat through their respiration. Short-nosed dog such as Pugs and English Bulldogs tend to be more vulnerable to heat stroke. Panting can mean that it's incredibly important for your dog to stay hydrated in warm weather. If your dog overheats, there are a number of indicators to be aware of. Heat stroke signs include excessive or exaggerated panting, lethargy, weakness, drooling, high fever, dark red gums, rapid heartbeat, unresponsiveness to surroundings and vomiting.
  • Overheating cars: A Stanford University study showed that regardless of outside temperatures, the temperature inside a car can rise over 9 °F per hour. For this reason, you shouldn't leave your pet in the car, even for a few minutes.
  • Avoid hot surfaces: Hot sidewalks, beaches and other surfaces can severely injure your pet's paw pads. You might be surprised how often vets diagnose this injury. The rule of thumb is simple: If the surface is too hot for you to handle barefoot, it's too hot for your dog.
  • No shaving: A dog's coat insulates them from the heat, so shaving isn't the best strategy. That being said, trimming a long-haired dog's coat, particularly if it hangs around his legs, is acceptable. Vets suggest that owners should brush their dogs more often in the summertime as well, which can thin out the thick coat and get rid of hair that your pet is shedding.
  • Avoid the heat: make sure not to exercise during the hottest parts of the day and be vigilant about finding shade to rest when the time comes.

If you have any other concerns about caring for your dog during the hottest months, please call us to offer you expert help and advice best suited to your pet.

Our Resolution 

Our Resolution is to always do our best to provide excellence in wellness, illness and surgical care for patients; to build close, positive relationships with clients, and to provide education and empowerment to clients and staff in a calm, comfortable, healing environment.


       Dr. Susan Murphy and Jenna

Four Paws Animal Clinic is a full-service animal hospital whose mission is to provide compassionate care and support for all our 4 and 2 legged friends. We provide complete medical, dental, surgical and imaging services, including ultrasound as well as deluxe cat boarding.  Our staff is extremely well trained and are passionate about veterinary medicine , having worked with Dr. Murphy at Best Friends for many years. She calls them the "Dream Team".


At Four Paws Animal Clinic, you will walk into a calm, welcoming, and friendly environment every visit, so that the experience is as comfortable as possible for you and your pet. We strive to provide professional, affordable, and advanced veterinary services, including, but not limited to newer alternative therapies such as cold laser and stem cell therapy using your pets own stem cells found in their fat cells. click here to read about this new and exciting treatment for your pets arthritis .

We also have an in-house pharmacy, dental care products, carry some premium foods and have access to specialists, making our veterinary facility a one stop shop for your pet's health and medical needs. Please browse around our new website to learn about our facility and to read interesting pet articles. Click on the "email us" link below to ask us a question or to submit feedback. For directions to our office see our contact us page. To receive free monthly veterinary care articles, please subscribe to our newsletter.

Remember, at Four Paws Animal Clinic, your pets are our family!

Dr. Susan Murphy
Nevada City Veterinarian | Four Paws Animal Clinic | 530-265-3722

521A Searls Ave.
Nevada City, CA 95959

Office Hours


9:00 am

5:00 pm


9:00 am

5:00 pm


9:00 am

5:00 pm


9:00 am

5:00 pm


9:00 am

5:00 pm




Find us on the map


Read What Our Clients Say

  • "Dr. Susan Murphy and her staff of animal lovers are the best in this county. I have been taking my cats and dogs to her since I was blessed to find her 14 years ago. She is smart, honest , humble and has many years experience. Dr. Murphy even sheds a tear her self when she has to send one off to rainbow bridge. Your little loved one will be in good hands here.............."
    Marcie R.
  • "Words cannot express my gratitude to the entire Four Paws staff. You are all truly a blessing; big shoutout to Jessica, Kevin, and Shelby for making this process so smooth for both of us...."
    Brandon B

Featured Articles

Read about interesting topics

Newsletter Signup

Sign up for more articles