Summer is when most people love being outdoors, with their furry companion tagging along to add to the fun. Unfortunately, the heat can be dangerous for your pet. The higher temperatures can lead to injuries and infections and increase the risk of suffering from heatstroke.
Pets may not sweat as human beings do, so it is easy for them to overheat. Hence, here are summer pet safety tips to keep your pet healthy and comfortable.
Keep Your Pet Well Hydrated
Pets get dehydrated very fast, and they get thirstier than humans. Ensure that you provide plenty of clean and fresh water for your pooch during summer. Provide a shady place where your pet can rest outdoors since too much direct sunlight can cause heatstroke.
When you go out on walks, choose areas with shaded spots along the way. Avoid over-exercising your pet during summer.
Symptoms of Overheating
It is vital to know how to identify signs of overheating. They include difficulty breathing, heavy panting, weakness, increased respiratory and heart rate, and thick drooling. Symptoms may also include vomiting, diarrhea, collapse, seizures, and elevated body temperature.
If you notice any symptoms, move the pet to a cool area and give them a cool drink. Placing a damp towel over their body can help bring down the temperature. Visit the vet immediately.
Do Not Leave Your Pet in a Parked Vehicle
Many pets enjoy riding in cars. You should never leave your pet alone in a parked car, even for a few minutes. Apart from being illegal in some states, being in a hot car can lead to heatstroke. If you must make a quick trip to the store, leave your pet at home or take them with you.
If you notice a pet alone in a parked car, take immediate action. If you cannot find the owner, contact the authorities. It can take less than 10 minutes for an animal to develop a fatal heatstroke.
Avoid Shaving Your Pet
You may think that your pet’s heavy coat is causing them discomfort and consider shaving. The truth is that an animal’s coat is designed to keep them cool on hot days and warm on cold days. While it may be acceptable to have the coat trimmed, you should never shave your pet.
Ensure that your pet has at least one inch of fur to protect the skin from sunburn. Brush your pet’s coat more often, and apply suitable sunscreen, especially if your pet has a short coat.
Keeping the Paws Cool
Pets begin to overheat from the bottom. The paw pads are sensitive and prone to burning. Being close to the ground, the body can soon become overheated. When walking outside during summer, keep your pet away from hot surfaces like asphalt and cement. Reduce your walking time during hot days to keep your pet’s paws cool. Protect your pet from the hot metal of a truck bed.
There are other things that you can do to keep your pet safe. Do not leave them unsupervised near a large pool of water, and keep unscreened doors and windows closed. It will help keep the pet from falling. Keep your pet away from fireworks as the loud noises can scare them and cause disorientation.
For more summer pet safety tips or to schedule a visit, call 4 Paws Veterinary Hospital at (276) 431-4838 to reach our office in Duffield, Virginia.