Sunday, July 30, 2006

Dog Days of Summer Warrant Pet Safety

The “Dog Days of Summer” have truly arrived! I heard on the radio just now that temperatures here could very well be over 100 tomorrow! The announcer reminded listeners to be sure and watch out for their pets during the extreme heat. And because of this, it’s necessary for all pet owners to take extra precautions to ensure the safety of their pets. And so I decided to post a Blog about this! It’s important that all pets be provided with plenty of shade and water. And whenever possible, bring them inside to keep them out of the extreme heat.

Do not leave any pet unattended in a car on hot days. Even if a car is parked in the shade, temperatures in a parked car can reach 120 degrees in no time at all. Leaving your pet in these conditions is extremely dangerous, even it’s for a short amount of time. The can suffer from heat exhaustion, heat stroke, brain damage and even death. Putting your pets at risk is simply not worth it. It’s a much better idea to leave them safely at home, preferably inside where it’s cool. If you come across a parked car with an animal inside, notify either the local animal control or police immediately. You may very well save a life by doing so! Symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke include:
  • Heavy panting
  • Glazed eyes
  • Rapid pulse
  • Unsteadiness
  • Vomiting
  • Deep red or purple tongue
If your pet does become overheated, it is essential that its body temperature be lowered quickly and immediate first aid is necessary. The first thing you need to do is to find a shady area for your pet. Apply cool water to your pet’s body, which will lower its body temperature. You should also apply either cold towels or ice packs to your pet’s head, neck and chest. Encourage your pet to drink small amounts of water or lick ice cubes. And finally, take your pet to a veterinarian ASAP.

It’s possible for pets to bet sunburned and your pet may need sunscreen on its nose and ear tips (ears are particularly vulnerable to sunburn and skin cancer). This is especially true for pets with light-colored noses and light colored fur.

If you like to walk your dogs, do so either in the very early morning or later in the evening. Pavements become quite hot during the heat of the day and can burn your pet’s paws. It’s also important to note that people with short-nosed dogs and those with thick coats need to take extra precaution.

Photo Info: We fostered this boy a few years ago. When he came into rescue he weighed only 68 pounds and had lost 3/4 of his hair. He's happy and healthy now and has a wonderful home. His new "Mom" took this picture of last year as he relaxed in his pool on a particularly hot day! His name is Troy!

No comments: