Summer is a time of outdoor barbecues, beaches, bare-footed and paw-printed fun! But if the proper precautions aren’t taken, summer can have serious repercussions for your adored pets. Animal Fair Media has created an informative reference tear sheet to put on your cool fridge that will help protect your pets from the heat and other summer concerns.
Fleas & Ticks
In The Environment:
Restrict your pets from warm dark places such as under decks. These are common breeding grounds for fleas. Don’t let your pet roam freely in tall grass or weeds, as ticks frequent these areas.
Speak to your pet’s veterinarian about the best topical treatments. Purchase only the products your vet recommends, be it through them directly or from an on-line pharmacy with a prescription from your vet.
“Never leave your pet in the car without the air-conditioning on. Even with the windows open, the temperature in a car can soar well above 120 degrees F.,” says Dr. Diane Levitan, VMD.
If You Must Leave Your Pet In The heat:
Make certain there is plenty of shade. Keep in mind the sun moves throughout the course of the day. Be sure there is a constant source of shade, as pets will seek it out. Provide plenty of water. Leave an additional bowl of water in a shaded area to allow for accidental spillage or consumption.
If you don’t have air-conditioning in your home, a closed up house can get “stuffy” rather quickly. Open some windows and if available, leave an overhead fan on. If it’s safe and your pet isn’t a wire-chewer, a standing fan pointed in the direction of where you know your pet frequents is a possibility.
Never forget to leave water indoors as well. A good tip is to add some ice cubes so the water remains cooler for a longer duration.
Signs of heat exhaustion/stroke:
Lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive panting, reddening of the skin, dry gums and in more sever cases bruising of the skin, and possibly blood in the urine or feces.
Normal body temperature in dogs and cats is 100-102 degrees F. Dr. Levitan, VMD, alerts us that “…in heat stroke, our pets body temperature often reaches 107 degrees F and the tissues literally begin to bake.” If you suspect heat stroke, seek emergency medical attention immediately.
A common misconception is to douse our pets in a tub of ice water. Don’t do anything until speaking to your pet’s vet first. You can cool your pet with cool water (not cold) and try to get them to drink water.