Jul 5 2013

Beat the Heat

 

 

Photo by: Nomadic Lass (courtsey of Flickr Creative Commons)

Summer is officially here. In case anyone forgot what it feels like, Mother Nature has already given us a few 90+ degree days. When we as adult humans get hot, our bodies remind us to take steps to cool ourselves off. Our furry friends however rely on us to make good decision regarding their health and well-being.

Here are a few recommendations ASPCA has come up with to help ensure your animals have fun and stay safe summer.

·         Visit your vet. If your pet isn’t already taking heartworm medication, be sure to have them tested before starting them heartworm prevention medicine. Heartworm is spread by mosquitos putting your loved ones at an increased risk during summer months.

·         Provide shade and plenty of H2O. It’s important that pets don’t over exercise. Pets get dehydrated quickly. If your animals are outside, make sure they have a shaded area to relax with plenty of refreshing water to rehydrate. In extreme heat, please keep them indoors.

·         Know the warning signs of heat exhaustion. Warning signs for animals include: excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, and/or collapsing. In extreme cases where body temperatures elevate to 104 degrees, your animal may experience seizures, bloody diarrhea, and/or vomiting. Animals with flat faces tend to have a hard time controlling their panting put them at an even greater risk for heat exhaustion. Remember to keep these pets, along with elderly, overweight, and/or those with health problems in air conditioned spaces.

·         Just like your children, you should never leave your pet alone in a car. On a hot day, a parked car with the windows up turns into an oven. When the temperature outside reaches 90 degrees, your car interior will become 109 degrees in just ten short minutes. In fact, leaving pets in unattended vehicles in extreme weather is illegal in many states. If you spot an animal in such a situation, don’t hesitate to call building security, local police, or animal control for assistance.

·         Does your dog know how to swim? If you aren’t sure, never leave your pet unattended around water. For dogs who love to swim, please remember to rinse off chlorine or salt from your pet’s fur. If swallowed, chlorine and other chemicals could also upset their stomachs.

·         Have you checked the screens on your windows to make sure they are secure? If not, your cat may fall out of an open window and sustain serious injuries.

·         Keep your pets out yards that have been sprayed. The insecticides may be harmful if ingested by your furry friends.

 

 


Jun 25 2010

Keeping Your Pets Cool This Summer

Summer heat has come early for us this year!  Our furry friends don’t always handle the heat well.   The heat effects dogs and cats the same way it impacts humans.  Dogs and cats can suffer from the same problems that humans do, such as overheating, dehydration and even sunburn. By taking some simple precautions, you can celebrate the season and keep your pets happy and healthy.

1. Keep pets inside.

2. Never leave your pet alone in a vehicle—heat exhaustion can be fatal. Even with the windows open, a parked automobile can quickly become a furnace in no time.  During warm weather the temperature inside a car can rise to 120 degrees in a matter of minutes.  Think about how hot it gets when you park your car and run into the store to grab something.  Even leaving the windows down is not enough.  You wouldn’t leave your children in the car- please don’t leave your pets!

3. Walk your dog in the morning when the heat and humidity are best.  

4. Don’t let your dog stand on hot asphalt.  Their body temperature can rise quickly and sensitive paw pads can burn.

5. Get a long hair dog groomed for the summer.  Long haired breeds can be shaved to a one-inch coat.  Never shave down to the skin as this robs the dog of their protection from the sun.

6. Be sensitive to older and overweight animals in hot weather. Snub-nosed dogs such as bulldogs, pugs, Boston terriers, Lhasa apsos and shih tzus, as well as those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible. 

7. Do not apply any sunscreen or insect repellent product to your pet that is not labeled specifically for use on animals. While you do want to protect pets that have light-colored noses or light-colored fur on their ears, ingestion of sunscreen products can result in drooling, diarrhea, excessive thirst and lethargy. The misuse of insect repellent that contains DEET can lead to neurological problems.

8. Avoid taking your pet to events where there are crowds, like concerts and fairs.  The loud noise combined with the heat can be extremely stressful and dangerous for our furry friends.  Trust me, your pet will thank you later.

If your dog or cat is exposed to high temperatures:
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1. Pay attention to signs of over-heating and heat stress.  Heavy panting, glazed eyes, increased pulse, staggering, throwing up, unsteady walking are all signs.  Also check our pets tongue- a deep red or purple tongues is another sign. 

2. If your pet is overheated, you must lower their body temperature immediately. 

3.  Take your pet to a shaded area and put cool, not cold, water all over their body to gradually lower their body temperature.

4.  Apply ice pack or cool towels to your pet’s head, neck and chest only.

5. Let your pet drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes. 

6. Finally, always visit and consult with your veterinarian.  This tips are only a recommendation, and you should always consult with your personal veterinarian about your pets health.
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Written by Trish Stinger
Web Marketing Manager at Wayside Waifs

 
 
 

 
 
 
 

 


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