We still have two months of summer to enjoy!
Following on from December’s “Pet Hydration Month”, here are the
Top 7 Summer Safety Tips for protecting and caring for your pets.
1. Create Areas For Your Pets To Cool Down / Keep Cool.
Our pets need to be able to escape the summer heat. Having access to shaded areas is vital. Another way to help your pets keep cool is to freeze some treats in water and create a treat ice block that they can enjoy, providing them cool water and treats. Cat & Dog Cooling Mats are a new way to give your pets somewhere cool to lie down and rest during the heat of the day. These mats are triggered to provide cooling relief when your pet hops onto the cooling dog bed (it is weight activated).
2. Don’t Leave Your Pet In The Car – Under Any Circumstances!
RSPCA has a new campaign to raise awareness about leaving pets in cars – just 6 minutes is all it takes to harm your pet. Cars can reach a staggering 50oC in just a few minutes. For more information, check out the RSPCA's website www.justsixminutes.com.au
3. On Hot Days, Observe Your Pets For Heat Stroke Symptoms
- Increased heart rate
- Excessive panting
- Increased salivation
- Bright red tongue
- Red or pale gums
- Thick, sticky saliva
Another way to help cool your pets down if the summer heat is starting to hit them is the new range of Pet Cooling Vests. The vests are designed to help keep your pet's body temperature at an excellent, cool level. This is a great option for predicting hot days/heat waves.
4. Limit Time On Hot Concrete, Asphalt Or Ute Trays
It is TOO HOT for your pet if you can’t leave the back of your hand comfortably on the surface for at least 5 seconds. If you can only just bear the temperature on the back of your hand, limit your pets' exposure to only what is necessary. If you feel the burn, so do they!
5. Leave Exercise And Play For The Cooler Hours Of The Day
We can cool down quite effectively as the summer temperatures start to soar. Our pets don’t sweat (except for a minute amount through the pads on their feet), and for the most part, they pant to cool down. Panting is the exchange of warmer air from within their bodies for the cooler air outside their body. However, panting becomes less effective as air temperatures rise and become close to body temperature. This is why our pets cannot handle the summer heat as well as we do.
If a heatwave is coming, stop all exercise and strenuous activity until it passes. If it’s a hot day, maybe skip exercise and walking that day, or at least move it to the cooler times of that day. Your pets need you to consider these factors.
6. Be Aware – Summer Brings Dangers
- Snakes – Due to the curiosity of our pets, they don’t recognize the threat that snakes are (particularly here in Australia). This time of year is when snakes are most active, so being alert is important. Never allow your pets near snakes. Snake repellers are a great way to deter snakes from coming near your property. If you see a snake, contact your local snake removalist and keep your pets away from the snake's location.
- Fleas & Ticks – Paralysis ticks are also prevalent at this time of year, and they are extremely harmful to our pets, which can be distressing for us as owners. Taking necessary precautions is important. Using a good tick medication will protect your dog and/or cat. Keeping your lawn low and limiting your pet's access to bush/scrub-type areas will also help.
7. Fresh, Clean Water Must Be Always Available
Make sure you have plenty of fresh water available for your pets.
See our infographic for Pet Hydration Month which shows how important this is. It also shows approximately how much water your pet will need on each day.
Proportionately, our pets require far more water than we do to remain hydrated. Our pets must have access to fresh, clean water all the time. The Drinkwell offer in this issue can assist with this (see below). This helps prevent heat stress and dehydration.
Summer is a great time of year where many of us enjoy the great outdoors, around BBQs, in the pool or down at the local beach or swimming hole. Make it just as enjoyable for your pets, and enjoy the rest of the season.