May 15, 2022 | By, For Pet's Sake
Summer safety precautions every pet owner should know￼
Pets are susceptible to the same summer risks that humans face, such as dehydration and skin cancer, but they are almost completely dependent upon their owners to make sure they avoid those risks. If the weather becomes too hot, an animal may choose to stay outside to play some more. If an animal doesn’t have a full water bowl in sight, they might not drink enough throughout the day, or they might try to drink something that is far less healthy for them.
For these reasons and more, owners need to stay vigilant in the warmer months to make sure their pets are cared for properly. Take some time to review the following warnings and hazards that are likely to affect your pet during the summer.
Moving, going potty, panting, and hot environments can all contribute to water loss. Make sure you are monitoring your pet’s water intake throughout the day. That includes paying attention to when they drink and when their bowl becomes empty. Bring water with you on walks, especially if you are going on a hike that may take you an undetermined amount of time. Be aware that dehydration may cause excessive panting, low energy, dry nose and eyes, vomiting, and diarrhea, among other symptoms. Also make sure to discuss any new medications with your veterinarian because they may cause your pet to avoid food and water more than usual.
Sunburns and skin cancer
Your pet’s hair can block out some of the sun’s harmful rays, but it’s not a complete defense. That hair can also obscure skin blemishes that may be cancerous. It’s important that owners limit their pets’ time in direct sunlight, taking care to not leave them in an uncovered yard for hours and applying non-toxic pet sunscreen when you know shade is unattainable and being inside isn’t an option. Keep in mind that ears, noses, and other places where the hair is thin or light are vulnerable to sunburns, which are ultimately sun damage that put your pet at higher risk of skin cancer.
Dogs’ body temperature can rise for a variety of reasons, including strenuous activity, being in direct sunlight, and being left in a hot car. If a dog’s temperature spikes too much, they will suffer heat stroke, a condition that can cause lethargy and seizures. If you believe your dog is suffering from heat stroke, take them to a hospital immediately. Cool air flow and pouring water on their body can help until you can reach the hospital.
Playing near water
Some dogs love to swim, while others won’t touch water at all. Then there are the dogs that hone in on a toy and will fetch it at all costs. Be careful if you have an overzealous pet because they might paddle too far into the lake or ocean to grab something they want. It’s always a good idea to purchase a lifejacket, which you can have them wear in the house to get comfortable before using it in the water.
Summer is a tempting time to let your pet off of their leash. However, don’t let your pet stray too far because raccoons, snakes, bears, and other dangerous creatures may be more prevalent in warmer weather.
Summer is the perfect time to take your pet on walks, car rides, and vacations. However, you can’t be too carefree because of the risks involved. Perhaps during a sunbathing session of your own, you can read up on the potential dangers and prepare for some fun in the sun with your pet this year.
Have a question about pet health? Want to become the best possible pet parent? Find helpful tips, reminders, and insight to giving your furry friend the best possible care with For Pet’s Sake! Learn more at drdevonsmith.com.