By Sherry Granader.
It’s almost summertime, and staying protected and well-hydrated is a must during the hot months of summer. But are you taking the same precautions with your pet? Just as too much heat and sun can threaten your health, your pets are just as vulnerable to these same risks … sometimes even more! Just imagine if you were wearing a fur coat in the summer! Keep you four legged friend safe from these top summer pet dangers.
Dr. Steven Marks, an associate professor of internal and emergency medicine at the North Carolina State University College of Veterinary Medicine said in an ABC News article that: “If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet”. Just like with humans, the youngest, oldest, sickest and obese animals are also at the highest risk for heat-related illnesses.
While exercise is always healthy for dogs, avoid walks during the hottest parts of the day to avoid potential heat stroke. The pads on their feet can also easily burn on overheated pavement and sidewalks. How can you tell if hot pavement is too hot? Feel it with the palm of your hand … that’s about the same sensitivity as your pet’s feet.
Never leave your pet in a car! Your car can heat up to more than 100 degrees F in just a matter of minutes, warns Lisa Peterson, communications director at the American Kennel Club.
Cats don’t usually have problems with the heat, since they will find shade somewhere, explains Dr. Marty Becker, a veterinarian in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and a columnist with Vetstreet.com. But still check on them and make sure they have access to clean, cool water.
You know you need to protect yourself against sunburn. But are you protecting your pet as well, especially in the sensitive areas like the backs and points of the ears and nose? Dogs with pale skin are also at greater risk for sunburn. Sunscreen may help protect your dog, but vets are divided on whether to use it or not. Check with your veterinarian for the best course of action with your own pet.
Bees, spiders and snakes, oh my! All pose immediate danger to your pet, especially for dogs who explore everything with their noses. And like you, an allergy to bee or wasp venom can mean potentially deadly anaphylactic shock for your pet.
The best protection is avoidance; so keep your dog leashed when out walking and avoid dark, shaded areas, holes in the ground and sunny rocks where snakes hang out.
Also proactively protect your pets against fleas and ticks; many carry deadly parasite illnesses like Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain.
Cookouts are a favorite summertime activity. But your backyard BBQ also poses many potential hazards for your pet.
Ribs and Corn on the Cob: Becker explains: “Lean pieces of meat are O.K., but don’t give bones of any kind or corn cobs. Animals can easily get an intestinal obstruction.” He also cautions against feeding fatty scraps to your family pet. “Animals will devour it, but their systems can’t handle the high fat content and it can lead to pancreatitis.”
Alcoholic Beverages: Open beverage containers or easily accessible wide-mouthed mugs pose irresistible temptations to your pet. Remember, dogs explore with their nose and then their mouths. And “animals can get drunk much more easily,” says Becker.
Contrary to popular belief, not all dogs can swim; it’s a learned behavior. So if you have a pool, take the same precautions with your pets as you would with small children to prevent accidents and drowning. It is estimated that tens of thousands of family dogs drown each year in swimming pools, ponds, and other water hazards reported by PRWeb.
<Also Read: How To Teach Your Dog To Swim>
Happy summer to you and your beloved pets!
Reference ABC News – Top 5 Summer Pet Hazards