Happy Summer Everyone! June 21st is the longest day of the year and in central Indiana right now, it just might be the hottest. As you can tell I am not a fan of the hot weather so it is a perfect time to share some additional warm weather tips with you to protect your four legged friends.
In true Dave Letterman Fashion, Bonnie’s Top Ten Summer Safety Tips for your Pet
Tip #1 – Prevention is key. Take a pet first aid class so you can identify the signs of heat stroke and what to do in case of an emergency. Here are some classic symptoms… excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. They can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.” Bracephalic dogs including Shihtzus, Boston Terriers, Pugs and Pekinese are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot in pant as much to cool off so keep them in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.
Tip #2-Don’t cook your pets (dogs or cats). The inside of a vehicle can become an oven very quickly. Leave your pets at home in the AC while you run errands.
Tip #3 – If you take your pet to the lake or the pool, teach the dogs to swim and also make sure they are wearing a life jacket for safety. Contrary to popular belief, not all dogs know how to swim.
Tip #4 –Make sure to provide plenty of water and shade for your pet throughout the day and don’t leave them outside too long in the hot humid air.
Tip #5-Exercise your pet in the morning or late evening when the weather and pavement are cool. Similarly be careful of sand on a beach. It can also be hot during mid day.
Tip #6 – Make sure to keep identification on your dog at all time. Pets spend more time outdoors and can run away so make sure tags are current and dogs are tattooed or micro chipped for easy identification.
Tip $7 –Keep up to date with flea and heartworm treatment. Also, keep Benadryl in your first aid kit in case of bee stings, allergic reactions and bug bites.
Tip #8 – Protect your pet’s environment. Windshield washer fluid, air conditioning fluid, rodenticides (mouse and rat baits), and lawn and garden insecticides can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. When walking your dog, steer clear of areas that you suspect have been sprayed with insecticides or other chemicals. Keep citronella candles, oil products and insect coils out of pets’ reach as well.
Tip #9-Provide alternate entertainment for your pets on the 4th of July with music or the TV and leave plenty of stuffed goodies for your pet to enjoy. “Exposure to lit fireworks can potentially result in severe burns or trauma to curious pets, and even unused fireworks can be hazardous,” says Dr. Hansen. “Many types of fireworks contain potentially toxic substances such as potassium nitrate, copper, chlorates, arsenic and other heavy metals.”-Taken from the ASPCA hot weather tips.