Do you know how to protect your pets this summer? The hottest months of the year are almost here, and while summer can be a lot of fun, it also comes with some potential risks for our pets. These range from diseases spread by ticks and mosquitoes to extreme heat and dehydration. The good news is that with just a little extra care, you can keep your pets healthy and safe this summer. Here are some simple guidelines to follow to protect your pets from some common summer threats:
Protect Your Pets This Summer from These Hazards
Pets need plenty of fresh water to drink in the summer. Be sure to fill their water bowls more often, and when you’re spending time with them outdoors, be sure to take plenty of bottled water and a portable bowl for them to drink from. Keep a lookout for signs of dehydration also. These include dry gums and excessive drooling.
It’s best to bring pets indoors when it’s really hot outside. If they do have to be outdoors, provide them with plenty of cool shade and make sure they have plenty of cool water to drink. Never leave your pet in the hot sun with no access to shade. And never leave them in a parked car, even for a few minutes. Here are some signs that your pet may exhibit if they’re overheating:
- Excessive panting
- Dry or bright red gums
- Thick drool
- Acting disoriented
If they show signs of overheating, get them into the shade or indoors in the air conditioning immediately, give them water to drink, and then get them to a vet if their symptoms continue.
3- Fleas and Ticks
Ticks can spread dangerous diseases, including Lyme disease. That’s why it’s a good idea to use tick prevention treatments or flea and tick collars in the warmer months when ticks and fleas are most active. It’s also important to check pets for ticks after being outdoors, especially if they’ve been in the woods or in tall grass. It’s also a good idea to keep your pet’s fur trimmed in the summer if they’re a breed that requires grooming. For other breeds, brush them often to remove excess fur.
Mosquitoes can spread dangerous diseases like heartworms to your pets. They absolutely must take their monthly heartworm prevention. To protect them further, use insect repellant that’s safe for use on animals. You can also make your own homemade repellant using lemon eucalyptus oil. Do not use insect repellant designed for humans on your pets as it may make them sick when they lick it. You may also limit taking your pet outdoors when mosquitoes are most active, in the early morning and at dusk.
Some pets, especially dogs, love being in the water, but that doesn’t mean that all dogs are good swimmers. If your pet isn’t used to being around water, monitor them closely around pools, hot tubs, and natural bodies of water at first until they become used to being around or going into the water. Never force a pet in the water if they are afraid of it as they may panic and drown themselves or force you under as they try to save themselves. If your pet seems to enjoy swimming in a lake or pool, be sure they understand how to get out. For example, if the pool has steps, lead your pet over to the steps and show them how to exit the pool the first couple of times they swim to make sure they understand how to get out if they go in alone. However, it’s recommended that you don’t let your pets have access to pools and other deep water when you’re not there to monitor them.
6- Hot Surfaces
The skin on your pet’s paws is thicker than human skin. But still, their paws are not necessarily suited for walking on hot man-made surfaces like asphalt roads and paths. A good rule of thumb to follow is: If a surface is so hot that you wouldn’t walk on it in your bare feet, don’t force your pets to walk on it either.
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