Keeping Pets Safe When the Weather Gets Hot

As the weather warms and the sun beats down, don’t forget about the health of your cats and dogs—especially if they’re spending time outdoors. Use these safety tips from a Lorain veterinarian to keep your furry friends happy and healthy.

Hydrate

Rule number one during the hotter months: keep your pet hydrated. Provide plenty of cool, fresh water at all times, even if your pet is staying indoors. Check the bowl regularly to make sure it doesn’t need refreshing or refilling.

Shade

Is your pet spending time outdoors? Make sure there’s a shady spot where he or she can cool off under. Perhaps an awning, deck, tree, or patch of bushes provides shade. If your yard doesn’t have these, try making your own shady spot by hanging a blanket or setting up a portable canopy structure. Also, put an extra water dish outside in the shady spot, and check it regularly to see if it needs refilled.

Watch for Overheating

The first signs of overheating are usually excessive panting and drooling. A pet’s gums may become dry from dehydration, noticeably so when you examine the mouth. As the condition worsens, a pet will become weak or even collapse. Now he or she is in danger of deadly heat exhaustion.

As soon as you notice any excessive panting or drooling, move your pet to a cooler area immediately and call your veterinary professional for further instructions.

Sun Protection

Our skin isn’t the only skin that needs protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Dogs and cats can get sunburnt too, especially on exposed areas like the nose tip and ears. Try using a dog- or cat-formulated sunscreen to apply to these areas if your pet stays out for long periods. These are available at pet supply shops or your veterinarian’s office.

Asphalt Awareness

As the temperatures soar, black asphalt can heat up quickly to unbearable temperatures. Our shoes protect us, but a pet’s paw pads can be painfully burned. Have your dog or cat avoid parking lots and other paved areas entirely during the hotter seasons.

Consult your Lorain veterinarian for more helpful tips on combating the hot and humid weather. Knowing how to prevent overheating and other hazards is the first step toward keeping your furry friends safe!

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