Friday, June 10, 2016
The Summer Solstice is just around the corner, and with all the beach days and barbecues, come some hazards dog owners should be aware of....
1. Hot cars. It's hard to believe that anyone would leave a dog in a hot car these days, but people still do it. Even on a relatively cool day, the temperature in a car can rise to killer degrees. DON'T EVER LEAVE A DOG IN THE CAR WHILE YOU SHOP OR RUN ERRANDS!
2. Hot pavement. Take off your sandal and place your foot on the ground. If it's too hot for you, it's too hot for your dog. Walk dogs in early morning or evening when the temps are cooler.
3. Heatstroke. Always be mindful of how hot your dog is when exercising, or even just being outside. Temps here in the West can rise to over a hundred degrees. Heatstroke is a killer!
4. Sunburn. Dogs can get sunburn too, especially light colored dogs with light skin. Noses are especially vulnerable. Limit sun exposure!
5. Dehydration. Always keep water available. Bring water with you for long walks and hikes for your dog.
6. Fleas/ticks. Fleas and ticks run rampant in the summer months. Check your pet regularly for these pests, especially after a walk in the woods. Dogs are also susceptible to Lyme disease, as are you. Lyme is carried by ticks. Try to keep your flea control as natural as possible because many flea medications are quite toxic to dogs. NEVER use flea collars where dogs can continuously inhale the pesticide.
7. Seasonal allergies. Dog allergies are rampant in the summer months due to pollen and seeds in the air.
8. Lawn chemicals. Many people still use toxic lawn chemicals, so don't let your dog walk on those perfect, beautiful lawns you see along the way! And certainly don't use those chemicals on your own lawns!
9. Insects. Watch out for bee and spider stings. Some dogs are very allergic. The first sting might not be life threatening, but the next one will. Swelling is usually indicative of an allergy. Keep some children's Benedryl around and consult your vet for the proper dosage. Give immediately after a sting and take to the emergency vet!
10. Foxtails and burrs. These vegetation pests can be quite life threatening if not treated. They can cause infection and painful abscesses. Check the areas between the pads of the feet, the nose, eye and ears as well as the body and remove them immediately. If you cannot, take them to the vet.
Have a safe, healthy summer with your pet!