Summer is a time for both you and your pet to enjoy the sunshine and the outdoors, but this season also offers situations that can endanger your pet. Here are some tips for pet owners in order to keep their furry friends safe this summer:
- You may be tempted to take your pet with you in the car when you travel or run errands. During warm weather, the inside of a vehicle can reach 120 degrees in a matter of minutes, even when parked in the shade. Pets left in hot cars even briefly can suffer from heat exhaustion, heat stroke or worse. To avoid any chance that your pet will succumb to the heat of your car, play it safe and leave them at home.
- Driving with a dog in the back of a pick-up truck is very dangerous. Flying debris can cause injury to your dog or they may be unintentionally thrown out of the bed of the truck. Dogs should ride in the cab or in a secured crate in the bed of the truck.
- Plenty of fresh water and shade is extremely important. In the summer heat, your pet can suffer from heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Owners need to know the signs: heavy panting, rapid pulse, glazed eyes, staggering gait, vomiting and/or a deep red or purple tongue. If your pet becomes overheated, immediately begin lowering its body temperature. Get your pet in the shade and begin applying cool (not cold) water. Most importantly, get them to a veterinarian.
- Even during the summer months, pets need exercise. Limit exercise to early morning or evening hours and keep in mind that asphalt can get extremely hot and can burn your pet’s paws.
- Crowded summer events and pets do not mix well. Loud noises and crowds combined with the heat can be stressful and dangerous. Remember, incidents of dog bites increase during the summer.
- Ensure that your pet is wearing a collar and proper identification (dogs are required to wear their license). If your pet gets separated or lost, they have a greater chance of being reunited.