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Protect Your Pooch

by Coach Lilly

Now that summer is here you might find yourself spending more time outside under the sun. When the heat turns up, so does the dangers when it comes to pets. Here are a few things pet owners need to watch out for as the summer temperatures increase.

Dehydration

Dehydration are common during hikes and long walks. Your pet should always have fresh water wherever you go. If your dog is weaker than usual or off balance he may need some water or shade to cool off.

Check the concrete to see if its too hot for your dog. Rest your palm on the cement for 10 seconds. If you cannot hold your hand there fore more than 10 seconds comfortably it is too hot for your dog. Dog booty’s are recommended on hot days but it may take some time for your pooch to acclimate.

Insects

Ticks are dangerous to humans and animals when it comes to walks. They can carry multiple disease that affect both humans and dogs. Avoid woody areas where ticks love to hang out. You should always check for ticks after a long walk. If you do find a tick, make sure to remove the bug and keep any eye out for symptoms.

Bee stings may be harmful too your pet. If your dog was stung, use a credit card to try and remove the stinger. If your dog is showing signs of difficulty breathing or sweeping of the face take him to the vet as soon as possible.

Cars

We hear about this every summer, but it never hurts to remind everyone to not leave your pets in the car! Even if it’s a quick run. If the temperature outside is above 65 degrees, you will be risking your dog’s health. If its possible take your dog inside with you or tie them to a shaded area for a few minutes.

Sunburn

Some breeds get sunburned easier than others. You can buy sunscreen made specifically for dogs. Do not use regular sunscreen on dogs due to the contents of regular sunscreen can be toxic. Dogs with shorter hair will get burned easier. Remember to never shave too close to the skin, fur protects your pet from the UV rays.

Bodies of Water

Stagnant water can contain harmful bacteria. Giardiasis is a parasite that when ingested will cause diarrhea, dehydration and upset stomach.

Leptospirosis is another common bacterial infection that can be acquired by drinking infected water. Common symptoms are fever, refusal to eat, and stiffness.

If your dog is showing any of these symptoms take them to the vet as soon as possible.

Grooming

Now that its warmer, grooming and brushing your dog is very important. Brush your pet more often to prevent shedding in the house and get rid of the excess fur that can weigh down your dog. Combing your pet will prevent overheating and fatigue. If you are grooming your pet at home, make sure you do not cut too close to the skin. Trimming your pet too thin will increase the chance of sunburns. Also be aware that some breeds should not be shaved in the warmer temps. It seems counter-intuitive, but some breeds actually need their coat to regulate temperature.

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