The dog days of summer are nearly upon us. Will your animal friend be ready to face the hottest months of the year? Below, brush up on a few essential hot-weather pet care tips presented by your Roanoke, VA veterinary professional.
Heat and Humidity
Just like you, a pet won’t fare well if left out in heat and humidity for extended periods of time. Heatstroke and dehydration are serious issues—never allow your pet to remain outdoors during the summertime for hours on end, and make sure they have a large dish of cool, fresh water to drink from at all times. Check the water dish regularly to see if it needs refilled or refreshed.
Did you know that pets can get sunburnt, just like humans? It’s especially likely to happen on areas that are thinly covered by fur, like the tip of the nose or the edges of the ears. Your best bet to avoiding sunburn on your pet is to keep them out of direct sunlight for long periods. You can also try using a canine- or feline-formulated sunblock if your pet will have to stay outside for a longer period of time. Ask your veterinarian for a recommendation.
Summer is prime-time for outdoor pests to latch on to your four-legged friend and start causing problems. Fleas, ticks, heartworm, roundworm… make sure your pet is protected against these critters! Have your dog or cat wear a flea-and-tick preventative and take a quality heartworm medication. This way, any dangerous pests should be kept at bay.
Do your best to avoid asphalt surfaces like driveways and parking lots when walking your pet. These surfaces can heat up drastically when the hot sun burns down on them all day. A pet who lingers on hot asphalt can experience painful burns and blisters! If possible, choose to walk your pet on cooler grass or dirt surfaces instead.
Toxic Plant Life
It’s likely your pet will spend more time outdoors during the warmer months. Remember that many plants and flowers aren’t safe for pets. Toxic varieties include rhododendron (also called azalea), philodendron, ivy, dieffenbachia, oleander, lilies, tulips, various aloe plants, certain rubber plants, the sago palm, and many more. To be safe, restrict your pet from munching on any plant life.
Want more tips for keeping your pet safe this summer? Call your Roanoke, VA vet clinic today!