Ah, the Dog Days Of Summer have finally arrived. It’s that time when you start panting like a dog under the sun’s intense heat. Wait a minute let’s ask the dog, I’m still not sure!

According to The Old Farmer’s Almanac, the Dog Days of Summer are traditionally the 40 days beginning July 3 and ending August 11, which coincide with the dawn rising of Sirius, the Dog Star. After the Egyptians, Greeks and Romans are apparently among the first to notice just how bright Sirius is. They used the star’s heliacal (nearness to the sun, in astronomy) rising to help predict the weather. Predicting the weather meant better outcomes for food sources, but also helped to prepare for flooding. There is even a reference to Sirius in Homer’s Iliad, written in the 8th century BC.

Today, the Dog Days simply refer to those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer.

Many would have you believe it’s just folklore or superstition. But those of us who would rather lie in a hammock with a cold beverage don’t need any convincing.

Ian Power