Here’s why we call this time of year the ‘dog days’ of summer
These punishingly hot summer days get their name from an ancient belief about the brightest star in the sky—not from dogs’ tendency to laze around in the heat.
For many, the “dog days,” evoke those summer days that are so devastatingly hot that even dogs would lie around on the asphalt, panting. But originally, the phrase had nothing to do with dogs, or even with the lazy days of summer. Instead, the dog days refer to Sirius, the brightest star in the constellation Canis Major, which means “big dog” in Latin and is said to represent one of Orion’s hunting dogs.
To the Greeks and Romans, the “dog days” occurred around the time Sirius appears to rise alongside the sun, in late July in the Northern Hemisphere. They believed the heat from the two stars combined is what made these days the hottest of the year, a