Do not leave your pet alone in your car. Vehicles heat up quickly in the sun, and animals left in them can succumb to heatstroke within minutes. Heatstroke is life-threatening for both dogs and cats.
To prevent your dog from overheating, do not exercise it in hot weather. Take runs or walks during the cool hours of the early morning or late evening. And be careful on hot pavement, as it can sometimes burn their footpads.
Dogs and cats need a cool, shaded place to sleep during hot weather, as well as plenty of clean, freshwater that is accessible at all times. Feed your dog or cat in the cooler hours of the day.
Be sure that your pet’s vaccinations are up to date. Parvovirus, an illness that flourishes in hot weather can be fatal to dogs that have not received vaccinations. Also, be sure your pet’s rabies vaccinations are current.
If your dog has not been tested for heartworm this year, see your veterinarian. Make sure your pet also receives flea and tick preventative medicine.
Keep your pet well-groomed. Daily brushing or combining lets you check for fleas and ticks. Ticks can carry infections, diseases and fleas can cause allergic reactions and “hot spots” in dogs.
Play with your pet instead of simply stroking it to fend off July 4th firework fears. Follow your dog’s cue to help it “hide” in a favorite room or under a desk, complete with chew toys. Turn on the radio or TV to muffle outside noises.
Keep dogs away from picnic garbage. Ingestion of corncobs and chicken bones can be life-threatening. The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center provides a complete list of toxic foods.
If you have a swimming pool, do not leave your dog unattended in the pool area. Not all dogs can swim and they can drown if they fall into the water.
Use a heavy screen on windows or keep them closed if you have cats. During the summer, the number of cats suffering from “high-rise” syndrome, or falling from windows, increases dramatically.
For nearly 38 years, Newkirk Family Veterinarians has been using a wide range of traditional and holistic practices and resources, with the end goal always being to give your pet a happier, longer life.