Depending on where you live, summer can be one of your favorite seasons or it can be an absolute nightmare. For most, it is a nice reprieve from the freezing, rigid cold and offers a time when you can really get outside and enjoy the sun. For some though, it can be absolutely unbearable, a combination of heavy rains on one extreme and unbelievable heat on the other. Of course, almost anywhere you live it is going to get hot, at least to some extent. For this reason, you need to take special care with your pets. So, how can we make sure we are providing proper protection for our pets?
Dogs are prone to get into trouble on their own, but as you navigate the summer months, there are some extra ways to provide for their needs and make sure they stay healthy. The first thing to remember is never leave your dog in the car alone, even if you leave a window cracked. When the heat of summer takes over, a little bit of airflow won’t be enough. Another pro tip to consider is to make sure you take your dog for a walk during a cooler part of the day. Rather than head out in the heat of the afternoon, get up early for the walk or wait until the evening.
While heat can be harmful, also remember that with heat comes an increased need for hydration. Before you let your dog run around in the back yard, make sure he or she has access to plenty of drinkable water. Also, make sure there are some shaded areas to rest in if you plan to leave him or her outside.
While you might not take a cat with you when you go out, if you have an outdoor cat, or one that spends any time outside, it is important that you also consider methods of keeping them safe. The first thing to keep in mind is very similar to dogs; make sure your cats have fresh food and water access, helping them get through the hot day. Provide them with some shelter outside, or at least a shaded area to rest when they get tired. Also, remember to let them in when they want to come in. If summer rains start, the last thing you want is to leave your cat out there to get drenched.
Whether it is a dog or a cat, another important thing to remember is that summer is also a time when fleas, ticks and other pests can be extra common. If you don’t already have a go-to medicine for this, make sure to talk to your vet about getting one. It can be unbelievably helpful in keeping your pets safe. While you are at it, try to keep all your pets off of hot surfaces like asphalt during the summer. Dog and cat feet are sensitive just like ours and asphalt can become hot enough to burn their little pads.