If you are a pet owner, then you know how much your pet means to you. In some cases, your pet may be like having a furry four-legged child, and your pet is as much a part of your family as any of the human people in your life.
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Summertime can be a dangerous season for pets because temperatures can soar to 110 degrees and hotter in some parts of the country, so it is important to take some extra steps to keep your pets safe and cool during the upcoming summer months.
One of the most important steps to keeping your pets cool is to make sure they have access to plenty of clean, cool water.
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A pet that becomes dehydrated, even by 10%, can become very ill and need veterinary care. Typically, pets tend to drink approximately one ounce of water for every pound of their body weight. However, in the summertime, this rate of drinking can increase to three or four times that figure.
Protect your pet from being sunburned. It may sound odd, but pets can get sunburns just like humans. This is especially true for dog and cat breeds that are hairless like Sphynx cats, Shar-Pei dogs, Mexican Hairless dogs, and other hairless animal breeds and white breeds like the French Bulldog.
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A good way to avoid a sunburned pet is to provide many shady resting areas for your pet. If you have an outdoor dog, then be sure they have a doghouse to retreat to when the sun is high in the sky.
To assure your pet stays cool and safe keep them (and yourself) out of the heat in the first place. If you feel the need to take your dog for a walk or some exercise, then try to do this type of activity early in the morning. Once the temperature gets up to 85 degrees or higher, it is best for both you and your pet to stay inside where it’s cool. Go out again, when it is later in the evening, and whether you are out in the morning or at night, be sure to bring a collapsible water bowl for your pet. Anytime you take your pet for a walk, he or she should be offered a drink every 30 minutes to keep him or her well hydrated.
Along with bringing water for your furry family member, he or she should also be wearing some type of foot protection. A good rule of thumb is to place your hand, palm side down on the ground. If you are unable to keep your hand on the ground for five seconds, then it is too hot for your pet’s feet to be walking on that ground.
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Doggie shoes are available in all sorts of styles and sizes, so you are guaranteed to find a pair that both you and your furry companion can agree upon.
Another helpful way to keep your pet safe during the summer is to keep him or her free from parasites like ticks, fleas, and heartworm. While it is a good idea to be protecting your pet from these pests year round, it becomes even more important during the summer. If you don’t already have your pet on a regular program for fleas, ticks, and other pests, then it is best to consult your local veterinarian to find out the best product or products for your pet.
Lastly, if you have a long-haired breed of dog, then it might be a good idea to get their coat thinned out or cut down for the summer.
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Before you take your pet to be groomed, check with your veterinarian to confirm this is good for your particular breed. There are some breeds that should not have their fur cut in the summer months. Therefore, always check with your pet’s vet to make sure what’s best for your furry child.
Everyone loves their four-legged friends, and by following the above tips your pets will enjoy the summer as much as you do.