Summer Safety Tips For People Who Love Their Pets
If you have big summer adventures planned with your furry friends – cat or dog – you’ll want to take the time and money to get prepared to ensure their safety. Although common sense is key, it pays to take a quick look at a few common precautions to help you gear up for summer with your best four-legged friend.
Sparky Steps offers the following tips to help you keep everyone in your entourage safe in the summer sun.
Check the weather before you head out the door.
Humans sweat. This is our body’s natural coping mechanism for overheating. Because of this, we can tolerate much higher temperatures for longer than our fur-covered friends. If temperatures will hit 80° with humidity of 90% or more, plan to keep the pups indoors during the hottest hours of the day.
Ensure the perimeter of your home is secure.
Will your dog be outside unsupervised? Many pets spend their summers like this. If your dog will be hanging out in the backyard while you’re at work, make sure the perimeter of your home is fully fenced. If you don’t have time to build one yourself, find a fencing contractor with availability this summer. When looking for pros, read online reviews and check customer ratings first. And don’t be shy about asking for special deals or even credits for larger projects. When you call for a quote, ask about the price difference between wood and aluminum, as well as if there’s any difference in getting raw materials delivered to start your project sooner rather than later. Keep in mind that an invisible fence is not foolproof, so your best bet is a physical barrier.
Create a cozy shaded area.
In addition to a secure backyard, it’s important to make sure that your dog has an area with shade no matter where the sun is. A shade sail, for example, is cheap and can be mounted to your home or on posts to maximize shade throughout the day. In addition to shade, your dog should have access to clean water.
Never leave animals unattended near the pool.
Most dogs are natural swimmers. However, that does not mean that they are automatically safe from fatal disasters. Northeast Animal Hospital explains that pets can easily get into a body of water but have difficulty finding their way out. Even if your dog or cat is fully supervised around your swimming pool, make sure they have a life jacket secured on their body. Or, better yet, add fencing around the entire pool.
Use sunscreen on your pet when outdoors.
Although they are covered in hair, animals can get sunburned just as easily as humans. Their nose, ears, and bellies are especially susceptible. Dog trainer Cesar Milan cautions against sunscreen that contains zinc oxide and also recommends sun-blocking clothing to prevent sunburn.
Watch hot surfaces.
Dog paws are sensitive to heat. Before you take them out on the road, walkway, or paved trail, make sure that it’s not too hot for their feet. If your plan is to walk on asphalt, it’s better to do so early in the morning or late in the evening to ensure your dog doesn’t sustain any burns.
Hire a dog walker.
If your pup will need extra attention and entertainment during the days when you’re away, connect with Sparky Steps. Not only will your pet get the attention and exercise they need, but Sparky Steps will also treat your pet like family. Which means you’ll come home to a happier fur baby.
The above tips are affordable ways to keep your animals safe during the summer months. Small steps, such as checking the weather before you go and putting sunscreen on both you and your pets, will go a long way toward ensuring that summer is just as enjoyable for your dog or cat as it is for you and your family. The bottom line: don’t let the heat keep you from enjoying the sunshine, but do take precautions.
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