Tag: summer heat

Staying Healthy in the Heat – Summer Pet Edition

the dirt and sniff new smells! We’re talking about your dog of course, not you! But as the season moves on the heat can start to be dangerous to you and your pet. No body is in the mood for another month or two of being shut up indoors. So how can you make sure that you and your pet are staying healthy and active? Here are our top tips!

Staying Healthy in the Heat

  • Stay Active, Safely – It’s important that your pet still gets their exercise, even as the temperature soar. There are several ways you can do this without too much threat of heat exhaustion. The first is to make sure that you or your dog walker time the walks to take place early in the morning or late in the evening when the heat is less intense. Another way is to spend your outdoor time next to bodies of water. This gives your pet the opportunity to cool off when they need to. Who doesn’t love a game of water fetch, anyways?
  • Lots of water – Make sure your pet is getting lots of water. A well hydrated pet can regulate their body temperature better than a dehydrated one. They will need more water than they do in the winter so be prepared for this. Get a larger water dish if you or a Pet Nanny won’t be available to keep an eye on and refill the water throughout the day. When you take your pet out, it’s also a good idea to bring a bowl and bottle of water with you as well.
  • Stop traveling with them – It might be no big deal to take your pup with you while you run errands in the cooler months. They likely benefit from the outings. In the summer though, it is NEVER okay to leave your pet in the car while you run in – even for a second, and even if you leave the window cracked. It can take less than 10 minutes for a parked car to reach deadly temperatures. Leave your pets at home unless you are exclusively going to a pet friendly destination where they can join you.

A happy and safe summer to all!

 

Photo by Robson Hatsukami Morgan on Unsplash

Hot Car + Pet: Do You Know What To Do?

No matter how many reminders, news stories, memes and infographics warn about the dangers of leaving pets locked in cars on hot, or even mild days, people continue to do it. On a moderate day with temperatures in the 70’s, the heat can rise to 100-110 degrees in a parked car. In the summer when outdoor it’s in the 90’s, it takes just 10 minutes to hit 160+ inside a car.  As a concerned pet lover, what should you do if you see a pet left in a hot car?

Helping A Pet In A Hot Car

  • Assess the situation – Don’t assume the worst. Look around and see if you can locate the owner nearby. Observe the animal to see if they are in heat distress or not. Visual symptoms of heat distress are excessive panting and lethargy.
  • Wait a minute – Unless you perceive the pet to be in severe distress wait a few minutes to see if the owner returns. You may spend this time taking note of the vehicles make and model, and pulling up the local sheriffs number.
  • Get help – If the dog is in severe distress enter the business  you believe the owner to be in and give the manager the vehicles make, model and color and ask that they be paged. If the pet is in clear distress, call the local law enforcement and let them know the pets condition in the hot car.
  • Know your risk – Many people will break windows to rescue animals in hot cars. Know your states laws regarding pets left in hot vehicles. If it is legal, always look for a corroborating witness who agrees it is an emergency situation. There is a chance that you may face charges. Always contact the local law enforcement agency or humane society before you take action.
  • Know how to cool a pet down – Make water available, and if possible wet the animal, but not with ice water! You want to cool them slowly and not shock their system.

photo credit: Headrest via photopin (license)

Shaving Your Pet To Beat The Heat- Is It Okay?

Many pet owners who watch their pets labor under the heat and humidity of the summer months have wondered about shaving off their pet’s thick fur coat. From rabbits to sheep-dogs many pets are burdened with having to stay “bundled-up” even in the hottest of months. Sometimes the easiest way to address your pet’s suffering is by doing the same thing you do when it gets hot – take off those winter clothes and chop off your hair! Assuming you can even get near your pet with a pair of clippers, would it be safe?

Is Shaving My Pet An Option?

One of the first things to remember is that pet hair isn’t like human hair and it’s not like clothes. Pet fur serves more purposes than just providing warmth like keeping an animal’s skin dry and protecting it from pests (like mosquitos) and it’s environment (like thorns and sunburns). Many animals have “built-in” systems that their body uses to regulate body temperature that the average human is unaware of. Not to mention shedding – nature’s way of removing your pet’s fur coat. Each pet variety is different though when it comes to the shaving question.

Cats – Cats are excellent at regulating their body temperatures. They are also often more mobile than dogs since they aren’t kept on leashes or in outdoor pens. This means they are more capable of moving to cooler spots if they find themselves getting uncomfortable. If you happen to have a cat with a particularly long fur coat who spends the majority of their summer days outside and you see visible signs of heat distress, consult your veterinarian about a quick trim. Shaving a cat is never recommended, but using a pair of clippers to reduce your cat’s fur coat to about an inch in length is often considered acceptable. Keeping your cat’s weight down and regular brushings are two additional great ways to combat heat fatigue.

Know the risks before shaving your cat!

Dogs – Shaving dogs is often a far more common occurrence. There are so many different breeds of dogs and their fur coats vary widely. If you have a breed that comes from a  northern climate and is bred for much cooler weather than where you live, definitely weigh your options. Dogs also have built in regulators for body temperature, but these will work less effectively in a Siberian Husky that lives in Georgia. Summer shaving is often used in dogs as a control for matted fur, parasites, and heat exhaustion in especially wooly breeds. As always though be sure to consult with your vet before you break out the clippers.

Rabbits – First of all we have to commend you if you can get near a rabbit with a pair of clipper running! Particularly long-haired breeds like the Angora rabbit almost always must be shaved (it’s actually called “sheared”) or have some attention given to their luxurious coat. Please note though that shaving the average pet rabbit is not recommended. Rabbits do tend to be prone to heat exhaustion but they also easily suffer from hypothermia. While it may provide your bunny some relief during the hot days it can harm them when it cools down at night or gets rainy. Opt for bringing your rabbit indoors during the heat of the day or keeping a frozen water bottle in their hutch.

Always remember to check with a vet before you shave your pet! Follow the basic rules of summer pet care by ensuring fresh water is always available, shade is accessible, and never leave your pet in a hot vehicle!

Summer Heat – Keeping Your Pets Safe This Season!

Most of the United States will suffer from at least a few days of seemingly unbearable summer heat at some point this season. Whether your fortunate enough to only endure a few days of it, or one of the many who will endure a whole season of soaring thermometers, you’ll want to be certain to know how to keep your pets safe. You might think you’re hot, but remember your pet has a fur coat on! Check out these signs of heat exhaustion in pets and be certain to follow these steps to help prevent it!

Summer Heat Tips For Pets

  • Brush your pet regularly! Many animals will shed during the first part of the summer heat and removing  that extra hair from their coat will both help keep them cooler and keep them from ingesting so much of it during their regular grooming! Feel free to trim long haired breeds!
  • Plenty of water! We know this seems like an obvious tip, but many people get in the habit of refreshing their pets water based on winter consumption. How much your pet drinks during the  summer will often greatly increase so be sure to check their water more often than usual. Also, make sure it’s fresh and try to keep it in the shade. Maybe even freeze a bottle of water and place it in your outdoor pets water bowl to help keep their water cool.
  • Make sure your pet has plenty of shade! And we don’t mean just a dog house to get in. They need to have access to full shade and open air at all points during the day. A dog house in full sun offers little to no relief for pets during the peak of summer heat.
  • Try spraying down a shaded area a couple times a day for your pet to lounge in, or place a little kiddie pool in the shade! Staying moist is a great way to deal with summer heat.
  • Watch out for hot sidewalks and streets while walking your pet! Most animals feet are tougher than humans, but they can still find the hot sidewalks or asphalt to be uncomfortable or painful. Try walking your pet in the grass if possible. Or talk walks in the morning before the summer heat has taken hold.

Keeping Cool in the Summer HeatRemember to keep an eye out for odd behavior in your pet and check on them frequently. Also never ever leave your pet alone in a vehicle on a hot day! Even with a window cracked the temperatures inside a car will skyrocket in a very short period of time. Preparing for the summer heat ensures you and your pet a great healthy season!

 

photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/8113246@N02/9674559859/”>dog.happy.art</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.0/”>cc</a>

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