Summer Safety Tips

With the arrival of summer, it’s a great season to spend time with family and pets both indoors and out; here are some tips to help you keep your pets safe this summer.

Never leave your pet alone in a parked car.  On a typical 80 degree Summer day, the temperature inside of a parked car can jump to 100-120 degrees in minutes.  Either leave your pets at home or have someone stay in the car with the air conditioning on.

Keep your pet safe from parasites.  Fleas, ticks, heartworms and intestinal parasites are all seen at higher rates during the warmer months.  Talk to your veterinarian about what products can help to keep your pet safe.

Exercise early in the morning or late in the evening.  This tends to avoid the highest temperatures and times when the sun is the strongest to lower the risk of heat stroke and sun burn.  You may need to protect your pets paws with specialized pet booties if pavement is too hot.

Be water-wise.  Dogs on boats should wear life jackets to help keep them safe in the water.  Dogs should not be left unsupervised around open pools.  Be cautious around lakes that contain blue-green algae as algae can produce a toxin that can cause severe illness in pets.  Clean your pet’s ears after any water time activity to help prevent infection.

Use caution with human food.  When planning the barbeque or picnic, it is wise not to budget human food for your pet.  Some foods such as grapes and raisins are toxic to pets while other foods that are higher in fat (e.g. hot dogs) may cause pancreatitis.

Be mindful of loud noises.  Summer can be a scary season for dogs with fears of loud noises with thunderstorms and fireworks.  Be sure to keep your pet inside and away from the loud noises, preferably in a room without windows so the “flashes” cannot be seen.  Talk to your veterinarian to see if medications may be helpful.