The dog days of summer are quickly approaching. With them come a whole new set of considerations for managing your pet’s safety. From hot pavement to poisonous plants, it’s essential to be aware of the risks posed by summertime hazards. With these seven safety tips and the proper dog supplies, you can keep your pet safe and happy all season long. Happy trails.
1) Be Up to Date on Vaccinations
As the weather warms up, you and your furry friend might be spending more time outdoors enjoying the sunshine. But, before you head out on your next adventure, it’s important to make sure that your pet is up to date on their vaccinations. Some of the most common vaccines that every dog should have include rabies, distemper, canine parvovirus, and canine hepatitis. These vaccinations help protect your pet from a variety of diseases that could potentially be fatal. Spring is a busy time for veterinarians, so schedule an appointment well in advance.
2) Prepare for Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks are tiny, parasitic insects that feed on the blood of animals. They can be a nuisance to both pets and their owners and can cause skin irritation, hair loss, and, in some cases, serious illnesses. Fleas are most active in warm weather and can often be found in tall grasses or woods where animals like to live. Ticks are most active in the spring and fall and can often be found in wooded areas or areas with high grass.
To prevent your pet from being affected by fleas and ticks, it’s important to use a monthly flea and tick preventative. Even if your pet lives mostly or all indoors, it’s still important to use preventative, as fleas and ticks can hitch a ride into your home on your other animals. If your pet is suffering the allergic effects from flea or tick bites, there are several allergy relief products for dogs to help relieve their symptoms. While you’re at it, pick up all the necessary dog grooming supplies to keep your pet free of parasites and looking their best all summer long.
3) Protect Your Pet’s Paws
Dogs and cats have very sensitive paw pads that can be easily injured. Hot weather is hazardous for their paws because the pavement can get extremely hot, causing burns. Even walking on cool cement or concrete can be tough on their paw pads. That’s why it’s important to use a dog paw balm when you’re out walking or running with your dog. A natural paw balm will help protect their paw pads from the hot pavement and other harsh surfaces.
4) Double Down on Hydration
Like humans, our pets need to stay hydrated, especially during the summer months. The warmer weather means they’ll be panting more, so they’ll need to drink water to replenish what they’ve lost. But getting them to drink enough can be a challenge. So here are a few tips:
- Soak their food – Whether kibble or wet food, adding a little water can help them get hydration while they eat.
- Use wet food – If your pet is resistant to drinking water, try switching to wet food or adding it as a food topper. It has higher moisture content and can help them stay hydrated.
- Avoid ice-cold water – After exercising, dogs shouldn’t drink ice-cold water because it can cause health problems related to their stomachs. Though rare and somewhat breed-specific, we prefer opting for cool or room temperature water.
5) Provide Cool, Comfortable Refuges
When the mercury starts to rise, it can be challenging for your pet to find a cool, comfortable place to relax or hide from the heat. However, if your pet spends a lot of time outdoors, shady areas are essential. They provide a welcome respite from the harsh sun. They’re also a great place to enjoy some extended time outdoors without you worrying about them getting too much sun exposure.
Air conditioning and fans are also great for helping to keep indoor spaces cool and comfortable. Fans circulate air, which can help you feel cooler even if the air temperature isn’t that different. Air conditioners lower the overall air temperature, which can be helpful for pets who like to relax indoors.
6) Beware Lawn and Garden Products
There are a lot of lawn and garden products out there that can be toxic to pets and local wildlife. Before you use any of them, it’s important to do your research to ensure they’re safe. There are a few general tips you can follow to help keep your pets and local wildlife safe:
- Be sure to read the label carefully before using any product. Pay attention to the warnings and directions, and ensure you’re using the product correctly.
- Avoid using products in areas where your pet has access. If you must use them in these areas, keep your pet away from the area until the product is dry, has properly absorbed, or has been removed.
- Store all products in a safe place, out of your pet’s reach.
7) Updated ID Tags
A pet ID is one of the most important things you can get for your furry friend. It’s essential to have updated information on their tags if they ever get lost. And, believe us, it can happen to even the most well-behaved pet. In fact, one in five pets goes missing at some point during their lifetime. This is more likely to happen when spending extra time outdoors or gates are open more often than during cooler months.
Make sure your pet’s name and contact information are up to date and include any pertinent medical information. Then, if they’re ever picked up by animal control or end up at a shelter, they can be quickly returned to you. There are all sorts of different types of pet ID options out there, from simple metal tags to more elaborate fabric collars with embroidered details. In addition to an ID tag, another way to help keep your pet safe is to have them microchipped and register them with your local jurisdictions according to bylaws.
Summertime is a great time to get out and enjoy the weather, but it’s also important to remember that our pets need some extra safety precautions during these months. Make sure you take steps like using pet-safe lawn fertilizer, checking for ticks, keeping your pet away from hot cement and ensuring they have proper identification in case of an escape. By being proactive and taking these simple steps, you can help ensure your furry friend stays safe and healthy all summer long. Have you taken any of these precautions with your pet? Have any more to add to the list? Let us know in the comments.