As we roll into the heat of summer, there are a few things we all should be aware of for our pets. One of the most obvious concerns for our pets is the heat. Because they can’t sweat, pets can overheat more quickly than you think. Just a jog around the block can overheat your dog in a very short time. Light-colored pets can even be susceptible to sunburn. Pets should always have plenty of fresh water and a way to get out of the heat. You should NEVER leave your pet in a car; even with the windows down as temperatures can quickly climb well into the hundreds.
As we are all spending more time outside doing yard work, there are some things to keep in mind… Some plants can be toxic to pets. Plants like lilies, rhubarb, and shamrocks can cause kidney failure if ingested. The bulb portions of Tulips contain toxins that can cause drooling, loss of appetite, and complications with the nervous system. A full list of toxic plants can be found at www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-
Also, don’t forget to pet proof your garage if your dog or cat will have access to it. Ethylene glycol-containing antifreeze and coolants, even in small quantities, can be fatal to both dogs and cats. While antifreeze products containing propylene glycol are less toxic than those containing ethylene glycol, they can still be dangerous. In addition to antifreeze, other substances routinely stored in the garage including weed killers, cleaning products, ice-melting products, pool products and gasoline all pose a threat to your pet’s health if ingested.
The next thing to be aware of is your dog or cat’s form of id. A gate left open at your pool party, or fireworks that scare your pet out of the house can lead to a lost pet. A lost pet is more easily identified with tags and a microchip. Microchips can be done at our office and tags are available at most pet stores or even online.
Parasites can be a concern all year round, but are especially active in the summer months. Be sure to keep your pets on flea and tick preventative during this time. Heartworm prevention is also very important for all of our K9 friends. Mosquitoes spread heartworm, and we all know how persistent mosquitoes can be! Intestinal parasites can be a nuisance as well. It’s good to have your pets stool checked regularly and be sure to clean up the yard of any messes.
Dr. Sementa and the staff at Webster Veterinary Clinic wish you and your family a happy and safe summer. If you think your pet may have ingested something toxic, please contact us immediately at 585-872-6467.
For more information about potential summer hazards, check out the links below.
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