Tips For Keeping Your Pets Safe During the Summer Months
Spending time outside with your four-legged friends is one of the best parts of summer in New England! However, the summer heat can be extremely dangerous for pets — even more so than it is for humans. Pets are especially sensitive to heat and humidity and can overheat and become dehydrated much more quickly than humans. Review these tips to ensure you and your pets can enjoy your time outside by taking the proper precautions.
1. Keep your pets hydrated
When enjoying the summer sun with your four-legged companion, consider the following to ensure they don’t get dehydrated or overheat:
- Give your pet plenty of fresh, clean water when it’s hot or humid.
- Ensure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun.
- Be careful not to over-exercise them when it’s hot outside.
- Keep them indoors during high temperatures.
2. Learn the symptoms of overheating in pets
It is important to be aware of the signs of overheating in pets, so that you can quickly take care of them in the heat. Some symptoms include:
- Excessive panting or difficulty breathing.
- Increased heart and respiratory rate.
- Drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse.
3. Know your pet’s specific needs
Animals with flat faces, such as pugs, bulldogs, and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively as animals with longer snouts. These pets, along with elderly, overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should also be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.
4. Never leave your pets alone in a parked car
The interior of a parked car in the sun can elevate to temperatures over 100 degrees in minutes, which can be fatal to humans, let alone pets. If you need to leave your pet in the car, leave it running with the air conditioning on. If leaving your car running is not an option, then bring your pet with you on a leash or in a pet carrier.
5. Take the proper grooming and sun protection measures
If your dog has longer hair, it is recommended to trim it short for the summer instead of shaving. The layers of dogs’ coats protect them from overheating and sunburn. Brushing cats more often than usual can prevent problems caused by excessive heat. If you would also like to use sunscreen or insect repellent product on your pet, be sure to check that it is labeled specifically for use on animals.