Last updated on November 19, 2019 at 09:48 am
Who doesn’t love the warm, sunny days of summer? However, more time spent outdoors in the heat and humidity can bring on a multitude of risks for pets. As the temperature rises, be mindful of these important safety concerns to help keep your pets safe all season long.
- The number one heat-related rule, and we’ve all heard this before, is never, ever leave your pet in the car unattended. Even if you park in the shade. Even if you leave the windows open. Even for just a few minutes. Just don’t do it. The temperature can rise to over 100 degrees in a matter of minutes, and it’s even illegal in some states.
- Summer road trips are more fun with your four-legged friend! Remember, when traveling with your pet, use a secured crate, harness system or pet safety belt.
- When taking your dog for walks or playing outside, try to do so in the morning or evening when it may be cooler.
- Try to avoid prolonged exposure to hot pavement or sand, both of which can burn the pads on your dog’s paws.
- Provide ample shade for your pet, with tree shade and tarps being better options than doghouses. A doghouse can actually trap heat rather than provide relief from it.
- Make sure your pet has plenty of cool, fresh water. This goes for drinking and, well, just sitting in it. Many lucky dogs love to take a quick dip in a child’s wading pool filled with clean, cool water. They may even drink it while sitting in it.
- Believe it or not, you can apply sunblock to your pet’s least-hair-covered spots, which are ears, nose and bellies on dogs, and ears and around eyes on cats. Make sure the sunblock is pet safe, such as Epi-Pet Sun Protector Sunscreen. Some typical sunblocks such as zinc oxide can be toxic to pets.
- Don’t cut your pet’s hair too short. Groomed pet hair, even if it’s long, helps regulate body temperature.
- Avoid exposure to harmful outdoor chemicals such as insecticides and fertilizers. You might not use these on your own lawn or garden, but be aware that other lawns may have been treated.
- Keep citronella candles out of reach. Whether burning or not, these can be harmful to pets.
- Try not to let your dog drink seawater as the salt may make him sick. Ocean salt can also be damaging to your pet’s coat, so always give them a bath after a trip to the beach.
- Never leave pets unattended at the beach, lake or pool. When boating, use a pet life jacket.
- Pets often go missing after being scared by fireworks and thunderstorms. Keep them secure in a quiet, safe area indoors. Never use fireworks around pets because they could cause burns and contain potentially toxic chemicals.
- Prep for summer storms by creating a pet disaster kit that has enough food, clean water and medications to last about five days.
- While your dog probably wouldn’t complain, you really shouldn’t let them share the BBQ food. People food could be toxic to pets or give them digestive issues. Keep it out of their reach and ask your guests to do them same.
- Treat your pet with preventative flea, tick and heartworm medicine, and check them regularly with a flea comb. Fleas, ticks and mosquitoes, which carry heartworm disease, are much more prevalent in the summer.
- Windows and screens can be a hazard if not maintained. Make sure screens are properly installed and keep unscreened windows closed at all times to prevent accidents.
If you have other tips, share them by leaving a comment!