AIMSS_Summer_iStock_000050157538_LargeAs much as we love to see our pet patients, we certainly don’t want to see them in our emergency room this summer. Follow our summer pet safety tips to help your furry friend steer clear of the ER this season.

Summer Pet Safety in the Heat

As the temperatures rise, so does the risk of your pet suffering from heat exhaustion. Pet owners should be aware of the risk summer heat poses to their pet. To avoid an emergency, you should:

  • Never leave your pet unattended in a vehicle, even for a short time
  • Be sure that you always have cool, fresh water available
  • Have shelter available in case your pet needs to seek refuge
  • Use extra caution with older pets, very young pets, or pets with short noses such as Bulldogs and Pugs
  • Try to spend time outside during the cooler parts of the day, such as dawn and dusk

If not treated quickly, pets who are suffering from heat stroke can suffer from internal organ damage and even death.

Pets and Barbeques

Many of us spend time outdoors with friends and family during this summer, and usually our pets are part of these get-togethers. Be sure that you keep your pet away from table scraps, alcoholic drinks, and garbage cans to avoid problems.

Offering extra treats and table food may seem like a good idea, but keep in mind some pets experience digestive problems when there are changes in their diet. Sometimes table food can also trigger episodes of pancreas inflammation (pancreatitis) as well.

Steer Clear of Cars

For many of us, summer may mean spending leisurely hours outside. When enjoying the weather with your pet, always keep him or her on a leash. It only takes a second to your family pet to find himself in the path of a motor vehicle. If walking at night, be sure that you and your pet are wearing reflective items.

Pets and Swimming

Taking a dip can be a great way to cool off in the summer, and many pets enjoy it too. When allowing pets to swim:

  • Never leave your pet unsupervised around water (not all pets are good swimmers)
  • Introduce pets to the water slowly and be sure they know how to get out (some may prefer to splash in a small wading pool rather than swim)
  • Rinse thoroughly after swimming to remove irritating chemicals, salt, and bacteria from the skin
  • Remember that if body of water is not safe for you to swim in, it is not safe for your pet either
  • Bring along water and encourage your dog to drink fresh water instead of pool water or lake water that may upset its stomach

We hope that you and your pets have a safe and happy summer! Should you need us, we are always here for you.