How To Keep Your Dog Safe In The Summer
What many people don’t understand when adopting a dog is that they are basically adopting a child that will need constant care and attention, not to mention the commitment and responsibility that come with having a pet. This doesn’t only mean cuddling and occasional grooming, but a lot of prevention and care that is needed for your four-legged friend to thrive and live by your side for a long time. This is why it’s crucial to keep in mind that getting your dog outside is definitely fun, but you should also be aware that there are situations that are less than optimal for your pooch and do what you can to prevent them.
There are some simple steps that you can take to keep your doggy safe and healthy, so we will talk about some of the situations that can be potentially problematic and how you can avoid them.
Let’s start with the basics – feeding. Dogs love people food, that’s for sure, but this can cause some serious digestive problems in the summer. Warm, humid days don’t help your dog in any way, add to that heavy food that’s hard to digest and you can have diarrhea or vomiting on your hands. If this happens, hydrate your dog and don’t feed them for a couple of hours, then maybe offer some low fat cheese, but if the state remains the same, take them to the vet.
Going to the dog park helps your dog socialize and get some exercise – two very important components for a happy pooch. However, dog parks are also somewhat of a battlefield, where dogs get into fights and sometimes it’s not easy to stop that. Be alert while in the dog park, know your way around, and just like with a child, keep your eye on your dog at all times.
Speaking of outdoor activities, it’s important to mention one of the biggest canine enemies – heatstroke. If your dog has a thick coat or originates from the colder parts of the planet, it is paramount for them to stay inside with air conditioning on and lots of water available. Even if they don’t have a specific problem with warmth, dogs are quite susceptible to suffering a heatstroke, so think about that every time you walk your pet in the summer.
If you own a dog, then you probably know that most of them fear thunderstorms and can become quite restless while the weather is stormy. If your dog predominantly lives outside, when the storm strikes, make sure to get them inside, otherwise they can get really scared and that fear can transfer to all areas of their life. Once inside, make sure to keep them company so that they would realize that everything is all right. Also, keep them occupied – whether you opt for cuddling (dogs feel safe when they’re close to their owners), playing or just chilling on the couch, these distractions will help your dog remain or regain calm, even if a thunderstorm is raging outside.
Dogs shouldn’t be left alone in cars for longer periods of time, especially not in the warm weather. Dogs pant when they’re hot (they can’t sweat) so when you leave them in a container made of metal and glass, it won’t take long before the temperature in the car becomes too much to handle. This is again where the heatstroke comes into play, not to mention suffocation, though this is a less likely scenario. If you need to go somewhere and it’s ridiculously hot outside, leave your dog at home, where they will be much safer under the AC, with enough water and room to walk around.
Heartworm disease is a very serious issue for all dogs, though most owners don’t really understand the reality of this threat until it’s too late. This disease is transmitted by mosquitos, but thankfully, it’s easy to keep it at bay with prevention. Just make sure to give your pooch some heartworm prevention during the winter and they won’t have any problem with this troublesome and hardly curable disease.
Dogs can sometimes be very naughty if they have an excess of energy. Boredom can provoke nervousness, even aggression, so make sure to exercise your dog regularly so that they wouldn’t get destructive.
All these potential issues shouldn’t stop you from getting a dog, but you should know what you’re facing when accepting a new pet into your home. For all the care and love you give, you will be reciprocated tenfold.