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Pet Safety Tips for Summers

10 Apr 2013 | by DrAn | Posted in: Wellness

Summer is always a fun time,with kids being home for their vacations and being able to spend time with your dog.But when the temperatures soar high and above 30 degrees not only are we uncomfortable but so are our pets. Just imagine walking around in a woollen sweater during the hot summer. Sounds horrid doesn't it. That's what your dog is going through.

It is vitally important that you monitor your dogs regularly for signs of over heating and make sure that they are safe. Because a dogs health is your responsibility as much as your child's health.

Some simple yet efficient tips can help you and your pet make it safe through the hot summer months.

The main considerations during summer are

1.       Heat

2.       Exercise

3.       Fleas and Ticks

4.       Heart worm

5.       Coat condition

6.       Shelter

7.       Food and Water

Heat  and water - The first and foremost concern is of course the heat. High temperatures can cause your loved one to overheat easily and cause a series of potentially life threatening problems.So,during the hot summer make sure you check on your dog regularly. Brachycephalic dog breeds [pugs,bulldogs, Lhasa etc.],Import lines and heavy coated breeds are especially vulnerable

The following signs are to be watched out for

1.       Difficult and rapid breathing

2.      Excessive panting

3.       Drooling

4.      Increased heart rate

5.      Vomiting

6.        Reddened tongue and gums

7.       Inability to get up or even sudden collapse

These signs could mean the dog is suffering heat stroke and it is imperative that you cool him down immediately and contact your vet.Spray cool water on his body with a hose and make sure he cools down.

To make sure he stays cool during the rough summer months make sure cool fresh water is available at all time.If you should keep him out side make sure several bowls of water with ice cubes in them are available in them.Make sure the bowl is kept in shade so he can rest beside it if needs be.

Make sure you keep the water in non tip dog bowls as well as tip dog bowls.If he feels he need water to cool down his coat,he can tip the container and do it himself.I keep my tip bowls outside and my Danes regularly tips it and enjoys lying on the wet lawn. The larger the bowl,more the water that can be kept and the better.

For tall dog breeds like Danes,its better to provide bowls with a stand so that they don't have to bend and put pressure on their shoulders.

Another way to cool down your dog is to make available a cooling dog coat.Cooling coats are a reliable method of keeping you dog cool throughout the day.My pugs are very happy wearing their cooling coats.At first they might not enjoy it but once they understand why it was put on they will even bring the coat to you themselves so u will put it on for them.

 

Make sure a cool Dog bed is available for him to sleep and rest when needed.Keeping a bottle of cold water nearby can help ease the heat.

 

Making available a fan/cooler for your pet is also a good idea.

Exercise - During the summer time it would be wiser to limit the exercises. Make sure the walks are done before 7 am and after 7 pm during the cooler hours so that you don't end up over exhausting your dog.Make available plenty of clean cool water.

Get them a few good looking dog collars to match with your walking clothes so that your dog can also trend up to the season.Make sure the collar is set correct and not too tight or not too loose.Make sure to teach your dog the WALK.

Giving him a shoe will help him from the heat of the hot asphalt as well as prevent injury to his walking pads.

After his daily exercise,he would enjoy if he could get into a pool and cool off.if you can,then buy him a Dog wading pool.Helps great and he will enjoy it.

Fleas,ticks and heart worm - Summer time is the best time for the fleas and ticks and they can easily turn into a full fledged infestation if not properly controlled.Many products are available.Consult your vet and choose one that fits your dog.

I personally suggest Frontline products from my experience and it is and internationally proven product.I have had to deal with one incident of mange and one tick infestation and came out clear from both.Before using them,consult with your vet as usage differs based on age,breed,intensity of infestation etc.Be Careful when you use them.After all they are toxic.Keep out of reach of children.Use gloves and masks as necessary and make sure your dog doesnot start licking off the chemical.

A pre summer check up at the vet can help rule out heart worm infestation ad prevent complications.

Coat condition ,Food and Supplements - The dry summer can have devastating effect on your pets coat condition.It is very important to make sure he has a healthy and moisturised coat.Carefully selecting dog food and conditioners for your dog can help prevent dry and scaly flaky itchy skin and save your dog a lot of trouble.The quantity of food needed for a dog of certain age and weight is fixed.Find out what your dogs daily need is.Experiment a bit and come to the right quantity based on his activity levels.

Also coat conditioners and shampoos are a must complimented with regular daily grooming and spending at least 10 mins of grooming per dog.Use the comb against the direction of the hair only a few times so that the fallen off hair and dirt can be seen flicking off.If you can stretch the skin and do it,it would be easier and more efficient.Bathing is not a daily event.Its bad to bathe your dog daily as it will make his skin dry.Once a week or even once in two weeks will sufice.

Combing helps to regulate blood flow to the skin and removes any dirt,dead hair,dead skin cells and any wandering ticks and fleas.Shaving down the long hair to 1 inch thickness can bring down the heat burden.Never shave till skin as it removes his protection from the sun.

Dog House - Another absolutely important factor especially if your dog is outside is providing him with proper Dog House.

Make sure his house is kept in a cool shady place so that their is no chance of direct sunlight at any time of the day.Also make available clean water at all times.The importance of clean cool water during summer time cannot stressed enough.

 

And finally,things to be careful about during the summer

1.       Never leave your dog in the car alone.A car can turn into a furncae in no time in the summer heat.

2.       Never leave him out alone in the yead without water or shelter

3.       Do not over exercise your dog

4.       Make sure you regularly check your dogs coat for fleas ,ticks and coat condition.

5.       Watch out for signs of over heating

6.       Always make available Fresh clean water and shelter and a good quality dog food with proper supplements.

7.       Regular vet visits are a must.

Following a few simple steps will ensure your loved one remains healthy and happy.That in turn means you remain happy and free of many worries and sadness.Make sure to follow these simple tips and comment below about your opinions and if you have any queries.

Wishing you and your pet a happy ,healthy summer.

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