How Do Dog Cooling Mats Work? Everything You Need to Know

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Author: Jacob Kay

Summers can be pleasantly warm and yet be blazing and blistering. During summer people prefer to remain indoors due to its sweltering hot weather and enjoy. To get relief from this hot and humid weather we have several options available, but what about our canine companion?

Dog’s body as it is has high temperatures, and this delightful summer can be troublesome for them. In this situation, the only question lingering around the pet parent’s mind is how to provide for their fur baby.

How Do Dog Cooling Mats Work?

In this article, we will go through one such option cooling mat, which can be best to provide your canine companion relief.

What Are Dog Cooling Mats?

Dog cooling mats are similar to the water bed we use. They are designed to absorb the heat of the dog’s body and evaporate the moisture from the surface[1]. These dog cooling mats provide the dog with comfort and help them fight this heat by cooling them down.

Water-based cooling mats require to be either refilled or kept in the refrigerator to re-cool it. If your dog is a heavy chewer then water-based cooling mats can be great to use as water may not harm your dog. These cooling mats typically last for 3-4 hours depending upon the weather conditions.

As quoted by Dr. Hanie Elfenbein, DVM in petmd, "Dog cooling mats are also available for dogs, and they are typically made of a material that stays cool and becomes cool under pressure without needing electricity."

The Benefits of Getting Your Dog Cooling Mat

During the blistering summer, dog cooling mats can provide your dog relief from burning weather. It has several benefits related to it too.

The Benefits of Getting Your Dog Cooling Mat

Prevents overheating and heat stroke

Dogs are more prone to heat strokes due to a rise in their body temperature and hot humid weather. Dogs don’t sweat like humans they are dependent on panting. Excessive panting causes dog’s mouth to dry and makes them dehydrated.

Cooling mats help them to regulate their body’s heat and reduce their temperature further stopping them from overheating.

Provides comfort

Cooling mats not only give your furry friends relief from hot weather but also provide them with comfort during old age or post-surgery. Ageing dogs mainly suffer from arthritis, cooling mats provide them comfort and relief from pain

Cooling mats are also useful in providing post-surgery relaxation to your dog. Cooling mats reduce inflammation and provide your dog comfort from pain.

Help your dog sleep better

During hot weather even we humans are not able to sleep comfortably so do our dogs. Sleep is really important for your furry friends and not getting one can lead to stress and laziness in them. Sleeping on cooling mats gives your furry friends good sleep making them wake up energetic.

How the Cooling Mat Works?

Cooling mats are designed with evaporation techniques. They absorb the excessive heat from the dog’s body and evaporate it by reducing body temperature. Cooling mats are either water-based or gel-based. They are normally easy to accommodate.

Gel-based cooling mats

Water-based cooling mats

These water-based cooling mats are made of a material which has a tendency to hold water[2]. These cooling mats absorb water and evaporate it in the air providing your furry friend’s cooling effect.

Water-based cooling mats require to be either refilled or kept in the refrigerator to re-cool it. If your dog is a heavy chewer then water-based cooling mats can be great to use as water may not harm your dog. These cooling mats typically last for 3-4 hours depending upon the weather conditions.

Gel-based cooling mats

Gel-based cooling mats are light in weight and easy to carry and this is what makes it popular among paw parents. Most of them are made of non-toxic gel and hence are not harmful to their health. If your dog injects the gel then no need to panic he will mostly vomit, but if in rare cases shows some serious symptoms consult a vet immediately.

Gel-based cooling mats work on body pressure. Once your pet gets up from the mat these cooling mats start to re-cool again. These mats are easy to carry and travel-friendly so you don’t have to worry about your dog during travel.

The gel in this cooling mat is made of:

Polyacrylamide is an acrylic acid which has the unique property of being soluble in water. It is used as a water jelly crystal and for water treatment due to its tendency to absorb water and form gel.

Algnin acid is an emulsifier and thickener. Emulsifier allows blending of 2 liquids which normally don’t mix like oil and water

Carboxymethyl is used as a viscosity modifier

The mixture of these three is generally non-toxic and they remain bonded even after application of pressure.

Air-based cooling mats

These air-based cooling mats work by allowing air circulation and helping release heat from the dog’s body. Its mesh-like surface allows constant airflow. These cooling mats prevent retention and provide the dog’s body with much-needed ventilation.

Phase change cooling mats

These types of cooling mats are filled with PCM (phase-change material), this type of material gradually melts into a liquid while absorbing heat from the pet’s body

PCM materials are mostly used in industries. The PCM material gets to a liquid state after absorbing heat from the pet’s body and stops cooling. The cooling mat will only cool when its crystals are in a solid state.

Thus the cooling mat cools in solid states and when your dog rests on it, it absorbs the heat from the dog’s body and starts turning into a liquid state. In order to re-cool place the mat in a dark cold room or in the cupboard.


How long do dog cooling mat last?

Typically dog cooling mats last for about 4-6 hours, depending upon the technology used in it. All the mats require re-cooling, some of them are gel-based and re-cool on their own but the one with water in it may require to be kept in the refrigerator. In case of a sweltering climate, the cooling mat may only last for 3 hours depending on temperature.

Is the gel in dog cooling mat toxic?

The gel in the dog cooling mat is mostly non-toxic but again it depends on the brand. Most of them consist of non-toxic gel and if your dog consumes it, there will be no danger. At most, your dog will just vomit the gel but that’s it. Other than that if your dog shows some other symptoms consult a vet immediately.

Do dog cooling mat works outside?

Yes, the dog cooling mats are designed to work both indoors and outdoors. This mat is especially useful when you are travelling outside during warm weather and don’t have air conditioners. You can place this cooling mat outside and let your dog enjoy his leisure time even during summer.

Do you put a dog cooling mat in the freezer?

Mostly gel-based dog cooling mats re-cool on their own, whereas for water-based dog cooling mats, you may be required to re-cool them by placing them in a refrigerator.

What is inside the pet cooling mat?

The pet cooling mats are either made up of gel or water. Both gel and water are safe for your dog, but some pet cooling mats may consist of harmful chemicals. Therefore always look for what the mat is made of before purchasing it for your furry friends.


These cooling mats can be the best options to provide your dog comfort and relief from hot summer weather. Not only that it has other benefits too. Paw parents always wish to provide the best for their fur baby and are looking for the best possible things. The sight of your fur baby suffering due to blistering summer is terrible and thus you may want to get cooling mats for them.

Cooling mats are best to provide relief from hot and humid climates but if your dog is a heavy chewer you need to be careful. Look for materials which are non-toxic and if your dog chews the mat throw it don’t re-use. Cooling mats are available in various sizes, choose it according to your dog’s requirement to avoid discomfort.


  1. Cochabamba, P. (2022, August 21). Used To Do not know that!: Top 10 Dog Cooling Mat of the decade – Biblioteca UPB. Biblioteca UPB.
  2. Evaporative Cooling Pads – maintenance for a longer life. (2019, June 11). Illinois Extension.
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Jacob Kay
Jacob Kay is a Veterinary Advisor and Editor at WWD. He’s also a dog lover and has two pet dogs of his own. He has extensive knowledge in the field of veterinary medicine and is always happy to share his insights with others.

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