In the DFW area, summer can be a fun time for both humans and pets however this summer it is sweltering outside! Summer and pets comes with some safety concerns for our furry friends. Here are some essential summer safety tips for pets:
- Stay Hydrated: Ensure your pets have access to fresh, clean water at all times. Dehydration can happen quickly, especially on hot days. Carry a portable water bowl when you’re out for walks or traveling.
- Avoid Overexertion: Limit exercise and playtime during the hottest parts of the day. Early mornings or evenings are better for walks and outdoor activities when temperatures are cooler.
- Never Leave Pets in a Hot Car: Cars can quickly become deadly ovens in the summer heat, even with windows cracked open. Never leave your pet alone in a parked car.
- Provide Shade: If your pets spend time outdoors, make sure they have access to shaded areas where they can cool down and avoid direct sunlight.
- Watch for Signs of Heatstroke: Heavy panting, drooling, weakness, vomiting, and collapse are signs of heatstroke in pets. If you suspect heatstroke, move your pet to a cool area, apply cool (not cold) water to their fur, and seek immediate veterinary attention.
- Protect Paws: Hot pavement and sand can burn your pet’s paws. Try to walk them on grass or use pet booties to protect their feet.
- Avoid Overheating During Exercise: Brachycephalic breeds (short-nosed dogs like Bulldogs and Pugs) are more prone to overheating due to their anatomy. Be cautious with their exercise and keep them cool.
- Beware of Pools and Water: Not all pets are natural swimmers, so never leave them unsupervised around pools or other bodies of water. Consider using a life vest for pets who enjoy swimming.
- Use Pet-Safe Sunscreen: If your pet has a thin coat or light skin, apply pet-safe sunscreen to areas prone to sunburn, like the nose and ears.
- Keep BBQ and Picnic Foods Away: Many human foods, like chocolate, grapes, onions, and some artificial sweeteners, are toxic to pets. Keep them away from picnic and barbecue areas.
- Prevent Parasites: Warmer weather means an increase in fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. Use veterinarian-approved preventatives to protect your pet from parasites.
- Fireworks and Loud Noises: During summer, there might be fireworks or loud events. Keep your pets indoors during such occasions, as the noise can be distressing to them.
- Grooming: Regular grooming can help remove excess fur and improve air circulation, keeping your pet cooler in the summer.
- Traveling Safely: If you’re traveling with your pet, never leave them in a parked car. Plan ahead and ensure they are comfortable and safe during the journey.
Remember, every pet is different, so be attentive to their individual needs. If you’re ever unsure about your pet’s well-being during the summer or suspect they might be suffering from heat-related issues, contact your veterinarian immediately. Take advantage of any summer safety tips for pets that you can find, they might just help keep your pet from getting ill in this hot Texas weather.
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