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Summertime Pet Tips
Sunday, 01 June 2014

June 1-- The Sweet Onion Animal Protection Society offers these tips to keep your pet healthy and happy this summer.

Party Smart

Barbequing is one of the best parts of Summer, but remember that the food and drink you serve your guests may be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from animals, and remind guests not to give them any table scraps or snacks. Raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate, and avocado are all common at barbeques—and they’re all especially toxic to animals.  Keep the trashcan covered and don’t let people throw scraps of food on the ground.

Be Cool Near the Pool

Don’t leave pets unsupervised around a pool or lake—not all dogs are expert swimmers! Introduce your pets to water gradually and make sure they wear flotation devices when on boats. Also, try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains potentially dangerous chemicals like chlorine.

Skip the Spray

Unless specifically designed for animals, insect repellant and sunscreen can be toxic to pets. Signs of repellent toxicity include drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, excessive thirst, and lethargy. DEET, a common insecticide in products for humans, may cause neurological issues in dogs. Only use sprays made for pets.

Made in the Shade

Pets can get dehydrated quickly, so if you’re spending time outside, give them plenty of fresh, clean water and make sure they have a shady place to get out of the sun. Note that animals with flat faces, like Pugs, Boxers, Bulldogs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.  If your pet is kept outside, locate it under a tree or some shady place and be sure to check it doesn’t turn over its water bowl while running around or playing. If you suspect your pet is overheating, put cool (not cold) water on their  paws and armpits and get them to the vet.

IDs, Please

Time spent outdoors comes with the added risk of pets escaping. Make sure that your pet is fitted with a microchip or ID tag with identifying information, or both. Animal control often has animals they have picked up that have on a collar, but no i.d. or rabies tag.  If these were included on the collar, they could find the owner instead of the pet languishing at the Pound. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Too hot to handle

Remember a truck bed gets very hot in the summer, whether it is metal or covered with black neoprene.  Your pets’ paws can burn and it will make your pet very hot in the bargain.  If possible, transport your pet inside the vehicle (it’s safer, anyway) or find a way to keep its’ paws off the hot floor…and give it lots of water.  Never leave your pet in a car when temps are in the 80s and above, even with windows open.  The car can heat up like an oven and death can occur.  If it’s too hot for you to stay in with the a.c. off, it’s too hot for them!


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