Hubble photo of Sirius, the Dog Star, believed to be in the public domain.
Folks, we are in the Dog Days of Summer. If you're feeling irritable and also lethargic, you aren't alone.
This is the Dog Days of Summer. This is because of the Dog Star, Sirius, and it's serious business!
Going back to ancient times, the Northern Hemisphere has had to deal with scorching summers and has had various explanations.
Here's the story-- Sirius, the Dog Star, is the brightest star besides the sun.
The "Dog Days" are when Sirius rose just before or at the same time as sunrise, but this has shifted somewhat since the precession of the equinoxes over time. This happened to be the heat of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. Also, of interest, it was the time when the Nile River flooded.
The Dog Days used to be considered "an evil time when the seas boiled, wine turned sour, dogs grew mad, and all creatures became languid, causing to man burning fevers, hysterics and frenzies" according to Clavis Calendarium, 1813.
Of course we can see now that it's the heat!!
Official dates are:
Old Farmers Almanac says 40 days, July 3 - August 11
The Book of Common Prayer says July 6 - August 17
- Understand what the heat does to us, emotionally, mentally and physically (that's why we have phrases like - chill, and hot under the collar.
- Stay "cool"
- If you're tired, don't take a Red Bull, take a nap
- Don't pressure yourself or others about things that can wait. "Let sleeping dogs lie."
- Don't get over-heated - mentally, physically or emotionally
- Stay out of the heat - literally, and also remove yourself from 'heated' situations.