As we move into the busy summer months, and restrictions begin to ease on gatherings, we may finally be able to get out into the sunshine more to enjoy all that the season has to offer. Much of this might also include our pets. Here are a few things to keep in mind while you enjoy your summer fun!
Have fun at a safe distance
Be sure to continue to follow provincial public health guidelines and practice physical distancing. Avoid large group walks, wash your hands before and after you venture out and keep your animal from interacting with others if possible.
Ticks the Season!
While early spring is peak tick time, those little bugs can be active all summer. If you walk your dog through brush or tall grasses, give him a quick once-over to ensure he didn’t pick up any unwanted hitchhikers along the way. You may even want to consult your veterinarian on ways to avoid tick exposure and any tick-related diseases.
Who doesn’t love the park!
If you plan on bringing your pooch along to picnics, snacks in the yard or while you BBQ, make sure to watch your food and be sure to keep them away from chocolate, raisins, grapes, onions and the sweetener Xylitol. Xylitol can be found in sugar-free candy, sugar-free baked goods, and sugar-free gum. Dogs ingesting Xylitol can suffer a drop in blood sugar that can be fatal in some cases.
Keep alcoholic beverages out of your pets’ reach. Alcohol effects animals far more than it does humans. When consumed in large amounts, it can cause a drop in blood sugar and blood temperature. This can lead to seizures and respiratory failure.
Make sure your pets are a safe distance away from your grill. Hot coals and ashes could cause serious burns. Always be sure the barbeque is cooled down once you’ve finished cooking and never leave pets on their own around it while it’s still hot. You should also keep your pets away from matches or lighter fluid.
Always be aware of your dog’s condition. Running and playing outside on hot days may cause your pooch to overheat, which can be dangerous.
Signs that a pet could be in trouble from heat exposure include exaggerated panting, salivation, lack of co-ordination, convulsions vomiting, and collapse.
If your pet shows signs of heat stroke, take the following actions:
- Gently move the animal to a cool, shady place
- Wet your pet with cool water (not cold)
- Fan vigorously to help cool
- Do not apply ice which can inhibit blood flow and cooling
- Allow your pet to drink luke-warm water
- Take your pet to a veterinarian for treatment as soon as possible
Let’s all have a safe and happy summer!