By Editorial Team*
As much as we enjoy the vacations to the beaches and the hill stations, the pool parties and the picnics, we also fear the wrath of summers. The same goes for our pets, unsaid. When the temperature rises up, the danger to pets also goes up. Whether your furry friend is a dog, cat or chinchilla, they can encounter some serious risks. If you get sun burnt, hot flashes, dehydrated, your furry friends remains at an equal risk of suffering them. The gist of the matter is that as a pet owner, you must be well prepared to keep your pets safe during
summers. We are sharing some must-know pet safety tips to keep your beloved four legged companion healthy during summers. After all, It’s not all fun in the sun.
With all the time your pet spends outdoor, one of the biggest dangers it is exposed to is ticks. In summer days, either you yourself should checkl your pet or get it checked for ticks, everytime it goes out for a walk. Especially, if it is meeting others of its kind or is being taken for walk through woodland. Ticks carry a number of viruses including Lyme disease, but the symptoms are often very hard to spot. Dogs may appear to be tired or feverish or might become lame. So, talk to your vet ahead of time for an effective tick medication, and only use products that are made for the type of pet you own. There are powders, bands and sprays available in the market, which would prevent your pet from ticks. It is important for the pet owner to get its companion rid of ticks, because apart from the itching, irritation and agitation, they also cause serious problems such as patch-fall (hairfall in patches) and low haemoglobin.
Dehydration and Heatstroke
Being a human, you also know how uncomfortable one gets due to dehydration or the troubles that a heatstroke impinges on us. Think about the threats that dehydration and heatstroke bring for your pet! A pet should always have access to fresh & clean water regardless of the season. A pet parent should always carry a portable water bowl on walks and bring them on vacation or long drives. Dogs with a short nose, like pugs, Japanese chins and bulldogs, pets with dark fur or skin, animals that are overweight or ones that have thick coats like Himalayan or Persian cats are prone to heat stress. Watch out for these symptoms:
- Excessive lethargy
- Decreased urination
- Dry gums
- Refusal to eat
- Sunken eyes
- Decreased skin elasticity
- Loose motions
- Dry Tongue
To check, gently pinch your pet’s skin near the shoulder up into the shape of a tent. If the skin is slow to snap back, your pet might be dehydrated.
Don’t worry if your dog is panting.
That’s how they keep themselves cool. More their bopdy temperature is, the more they will pant. Other ways to cool your companion include fans, allowing your pet to stay in the rooms with AC or coolers, ice packs for snippets of time, frozen treats, kiddie pools and sprinklers. If you have kids also, who love pets, they will surely have a blast.
Pools and Water
Despite all that YouTube may tell us, cats and rabbits don’t like to swim.
Also, we must know that there are specific breeds iof dogs which are categorised as Water Dogs. So, not all dogs have mastered the technique of doggie paddle. Some may not like water, some might be seriously hydrophobic and certain breeds like pugs and terriers may have trouble in swimming because of their body type. Before you bring your pet to the beach or pool, buy a flotation device or gear to keep your running mate safe. If you are planning for a boating trip with your dog this summer, make sure that it doesn’t jump overboard, since you are unaware of the chemical level and the minutely visible insects of that water body, which might end up harming your pet in progressive and latent ways. Also, one should never try to force its pet into water.
If you are lucky because your pet enjoys splashing water around, always rinse them off after a swim. The chlorine, salt and bacteria in pools and lakes can be harmful for the pets. Animals should also have an open area nearby, so that they can cool off and have access to fresh water, as drinking salty water of the ocean and pool water can cause them health problems.
We all have been guilty of doing it, we leave the dog or cat in the car to run a quick errand around. But in the summer months, especially when the temperature is above 40 degrees, we should not do that. It is very risky to leave your dog alone in the car/truck in such harsh temperatures. You never know, what mood your pet has been in and what might act as a stressor to him. It can jump out in search of water or a for its own kind on heat. So, always keep your pet close toyourself when you are taking it out.
More time outdoors with your pet means more potential encounters with slithering serpents. Many are harmless, but sometimes a snake’s bite is worse than our dog’s bark. Protect your pet by keeping your yard tidy. Snakes love to hide and tall grass and a pile of junk are the perfect spots. If your pet is friendly or too protective about its area, keep it into the house untill you ensure that your yard is safe. Unfortunately, a cat or a toy dog breed can be of a perfect-sized meal for some snakes. If a pet is bitten by a snake, its face and head will swell up and you should call your vet right away.
Ever seen your pet runninng after any alien or a moving agent, like the laser light, bubbles or bees? That is a very common behaviour to notice. While curiosity may not kill your pet but it would still get stung. When you see yopu pet wailing and scratching constantly at one place together, knwo that it has been stung by a bee.
If there is a lot of swelling, call your vet, who will suggest an office visit or shall prescribe a counter medicine. Some OTCs are harmful to pets, so never dispense it on your own. And observe how your pet responds to any swelling. If they are very irritated, they will scratch the stung area, pulling out the fur, and that might make your pet look bald. Bring your pet to the vet right away or call the vet home if you notice this kind of behaviour or these spots.
Grooming is very important in warmer weather. We need to brush our pet more often during the summer to get rid of excess or matted fur, which can weigh a pet down and contribute to overheating. If you live in an area where there are dust storms, make sure that you keep your pet clean. Take it for regular showers. If they seem uncomfortable because of the thick coat, for example, dogs may pant too much, consider taking them to a groomer. But do not take yourself as a barber and try cutting its hair by your own. It is the coat that protects your pet from the sizzling summer sun. Mainly, keep your pet clean by brushing its coat regularly and taking it for regular showers.
Grooming is very important in warmer weather. We need to brush our pet more often during the summer to get rid of excess or matted fur, which can weigh a pet down and contribute to overheating.