CARING FOR DOGS in summer:

CARING FOR DOGS in summer:

 

With hot months approaching in the Southern Highlands and Southern Tablelands, now is the perfect time to address the risks that the higher temperatures bring to our furry companions. None more so than parasites, ear infections and heat strokes.

Here are my tips which you can quickly put into practice.

 

  • Always take a bottle of water with you for your pet when going out for the day, just as you do for yourself.
  • It is essential to remember our pets do not sweat in the same way as us and can easily become overheated. Watch for any signs of dehydration include dry gums and excessive drooling. If your dog displays any symptoms of heatstroke, take him or her immediately to your Vet.
  • Always provide plenty of cool water and shade at all times as dogs get much thirstier than we do when they are hot.
  • If you have left your pooch alone at home, ensure that they have access to clean water and make sure you leave their water bowl in a sheltered spot [or inside].
  • Remember that direct sunlight can overheat your dog and can quickly lead to heatstroke [and impact their kidneys]. A suitable pet wading pool to cool them may be useful but first ensure that your dog has first been introduced to it and knows the drill.
  • Apply sunscreen! Believe it or not, dogs suffer from sunburn. If you’re spending a day out with your dog, apply sunscreen every three to four hours, especially on the areas where there are minimal hair – bellies, ears and nose areas.
  • Your Vet will advise on pet products that are suitable for your pet.

 

When are the best times to exercise your pet?

Walk and exercise your dog in during the hours of early morning and late evening. Never walk your dog in the middle [or during the heat] of the day and ensure that you take breaks in the shade and have plenty of water available.

 

Keeping your dog’s paws cool.

Dogs and cats heat and cool from the bottom up.  If your dog is outside all day, try to keep him or her off hot surfaces such as cement and asphalt.  Not only will they burn their paws on these harsh surfaces but their body temperature will also increase and overheat.

 

Cooling down.

A lovely way to cool your dog down quickly is to spray him or her with water or use a wet towel. When you do this, focus on their paws and stomach. Alternatively, doggie boots are a great way to protect their paws.

 

Car travel:

Never leave your pet in the car unattended. It takes less than 10 minutes for a pet to develop heat stroke.  It is also illegal to do so in most Australian states where there are strict legislation laws.  Either take your pets with you or leave them safe at home.

 

Other tips for summer:

  • Summer – dangerous season for parasites. In summer, fleas, ticks, mosquitos and other parasites are practically everywhere. Not only do they carry tapeworms and heartworms, but certain parasites also carry life-threatening diseases such as Lyme or Bartonella.  Talk to your Vet about using suitable products for your dog’s protection.
  • Consider a Life Vest. Just like us, dogs enjoy cooling off in water and especially love the temptation of jumping in a pool, rivers or even the South Coast. However, not all dogs swim well, and even those that do might not know how to get out of a pool. In the sea, they may also encounter strong currents and riptides and can easily be swept out to sea. A life vest will assist your pet to stay afloat and be action-ready.
  • Fireworks
    Many dogs become anxious and distressed when celebratory fireworks fill the sky so please ensure that he or she is kept indoor in a quiet zone of your home so it will feel safe and secure.