As the days get longer and the weather gets warmer, many pet owners are spending more time outdoors with their furry friends. However, excessive time in hot weather can spell danger for your animals. Check out these simple precautions provided by the ASPCA to prevent your pet from overheating this season.
1. Give your pet plenty of water
Pets can get dehydrated quickly, so be sure to give them plenty of fresh, clean water when in the hot weather. Additionally, do not over exercise your animal in the heat and make sure they have a shady place to rest when outdoors.
2. Know the symptoms of overheating in pets
Excessive panting, difficulty breathing, increased heart rate, drooling, and mild weakness are all signs your pet has become overheated. Animals with flat faces like Pugs and Persian cats, elderly animals, and overweight pets are more susceptible to heat stroke. Be sure to keep these types of animals in a cool air-conditioned room as much as possible.
3. Never leave your pet unsupervised
Leaving a pet alone in a parked car in the heat can lead to extreme heat stroke and can even be fatal. Do not leave your pet unsupervised around a pool, as not all dogs are good swimmers and ingestion of chlorine and other chemicals can cause health problems. Open unscreened windows can pose a danger to pets as they can fall or jump out of them if unsupervised. Do not let your pet linger too long of hot asphalt, as their bodies and paws can heat up quicker being lower to the ground.
4. Do not shave your dog
Feel free to trim longer hair, but never fully shave your pet. The layers of a dogs’ coat protect them from overheating and sunburn. Cats should be brushed more often than usual to prevent heat related health problems.
5. Visit the vet for a Spring/early Summer checkup
Be sure to get your animal tested for heartworm if they are not already on year-round preventative medication.
For more tips on how to keep your pet safe during the heat, please visit the ASPCA website.