Backyard barbecues, fireworks on the 4th, weekends at the beach – summer is just around the corner! Make sure it’s a fun season for both you and your pet by visiting your trusted veterinarian at Anchor Animal Hospital for preventive veterinary care. It is important to remember that some of the things we look forward to during this time of year can be challenging for our pets. Noisy parties, vacations away from home, and even outings can be downright dangerous. The more you can do to prepare your pet and be aware of potentially stressful situations, the happier your summer will be for both you and your pet.
With summertime comes the heat. While we don’t get triple digits in Mattapoisett the way they do in other parts of the country, even temperatures above 75-degrees can be life-threatening to a dog in many situations. Heat stroke can affect dogs quickly, regardless of their size. It is important to speak with your vet about signs and symptoms associated with heat stroke so you will know what to do if your pet is in danger.
Vet care for cats and dogs should include seasonal tips, such as how to prevent heat stroke and other summer-related issues. Sunburns and burns to your dog’s sensitive paw pads, as well as other dangers, can occur when the temperature rises. Hot asphalt, hot sand, and even hot dirt areas in a backyard can hurt your pet and cause severe damage. Consider dog booties on hot days or leave your pet home safe in the air-conditioning where they won’t be accidentally put in harm’s way. Ask your vet at the animal hospital in Dartmouth about pet-safe sunscreen for times when your pet will be outdoors in the summer sun.
Another thing that many people don’t consider is water and how dangerous it can be for dogs. While most believe that all dogs can swim, that’s not true. Dogs can drown or become seriously ill after near-drowning in fresh water, salt water, and pool water. Just like humans, it only takes a small amount of aspirated water to threaten your dog’s life. Be acutely aware of all humans and dogs when spending time at a lake, pool, or beach. Even a small backyard wading pool can quickly become a hazard when left unsupervised.
Consider getting an approved life jacket flotation device for your dog if you take them out on the water, whether on a boat, kayak, or paddleboard. Dogs who spend a lot of time at the beach or along the shoreline should also be fitted for and wear a life vest. Even dogs who are strong swimmers can get swept up into strong currents and rip tides, so it pays to be alert at all times. If you have a pool in your backyard, make sure to get a security fence, along with a water surface alarm. This is a smart choice for both kids and pets.
Fleas, Ticks, Flies, and Mosquitoes
Visit your local veterinarian before the summer season gets into full swing to ask about preventive veterinary care for fleas, ticks, flies, and mosquitoes. All of these pests can spread disease to pets and humans, so it pays to be on the offense when it comes to preventive care. Heartworm treatment for dogs is important, but you also need to be aware of all the issues surrounding fleas, ticks, and flies in the local Southeastern Massachusetts and Greater New England region. Environmental experts are predicting a greater-than-usual season for ticks, so the sooner you can schedule an appointment at Anchor Animal Hospital, the better.
That being said, toxins and poisons used to spray for pests in the backyard need to be put up and away from pets. If you can lock them in a shed or garage cupboard, that’s the best course of action. Gardening poisons should also be kept up and away as well, including snail bait, rat traps, and roach spray. Add these to the list of standard keep-away-from-pets-and-kids chemicals, such as chlorine, anti-freeze, and other household and automotive products. Consider not just your own pets and kids, but those in your neighborhood as well. Even if your dog can’t get into these chemicals due to a fence or other barrier, doesn’t mean a sneaky cat or nosy kid can’t find their way into an unlocked shed and get into trouble. Lock all chemicals, toxins, and poisons up for safety.
Schedule a Pre-Summer Check-Up
So before you take your dog to the park, beach, backyard barbecue, or on vacation, make sure to schedule a pre-summer check-up with your trusted veterinarian at Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth. Our team provides quality and comprehensive vet care for cats and dogs, including preventive veterinary care. We can offer the best solutions to prevent summertime pests and disease while giving you all of the advice and information you need to keep your pet safe. Give us a call at 508-996-3731 to schedule an appointment or to speak with one of our team members about vaccinations, check-ups, or heartworm treatment for dogs.