Happy Fuzzy Friday Everyone!! Man it’s been a SCORCHER here in NYC this week, with temperatures reaching well into the high 90’s, the heat wave currently hitting the East Coast has definitely been on the forefront of everyone’s mind. With that being said, this week’s Fuzzy Friday Feature is a little less furry and more focused on ways we can be sure to keep our fuzzy friends safe during times of extreme heat. Although some of these tips are more or less common sense, others may surprise you and as any true pet lover knows, when it comes to your pets safety and well being you can never be too careful.
1. Water, Water, Water- during these hot summer months your dog, cat, mini pig or Guinea pig, all need plenty of water. Be sure they have easy access to plenty of clean water when at home, on the road, or even when just going on a long summer stroll. Pets get dehydrated very easily so having water available for them when they want it will help prevent them from becoming overheated.
2. Leave Your Pet at Home-for some this is probably one of the harder things to do but keeping your pets out of the extreme temperatures is always a good idea on hot days. Although sad puppy eyes and melancholy meow meow’s can be heartbreaking to see and hear as you close the door behind you, it’s best if you can to keep your Fifi’s and Fido’s out of the heat and safe at home.
3. Be Cool-it is true that’s it’s important for everyone to do their part to conserve as much energy as possible during times of extreme heat however never at the expense of your pet’s safety. Be sure your pet has a place they can keep cool during the day, either by keeping your house well ventilated with fans and open windows or leaving the Air Conditioner on when you are gone, to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home for your fuzzy friends.
4. Never Leave Your Pet in the Car- If you can’t leave your pet at home Never Ever Ever leave them in the car-EVER. Leaving your pets in the car can be deadly as temperatures quickly rise in cars in times of extreme heat. According to the Houston SPCA during the hot summer months, “Even with the car windows cracked and/or parked in the shade, the inside temperature can reach 120 degrees.”
5. Watch When You’re Walking- Of course just because it’s summer doesn’t mean we have to lock our pets inside and throw away the key but be sure that when you do take your pets for a walk outside that’s it’s during one of the coolest times of the day. Early in the morning or later in the evening are when temperatures will be at their lowest so these are the best times for your regular walks with your fantastic fuzzballs.
6. Buzz the Fuzz- one of the best ways to be sure your pet has the greatest chance to stay cool this summer is getting rid of any excess hair. A little summer trim or buzz cut can work wonders for pets, preventing them from overheating during the summertime.
7. SPFF-Sun Protect Furry Friends! Just as we humans are susceptible to the suns ray’s so are our pets. Their often delicate skin can get sunburned pretty easily so be sure to ask your vet about sunscreens that are safe to use on your fuzz-ball.
8. Be Secure, Insure Safety- be sure that when you open the windows and screens that they are nice and secure so you don’t risk your pets taking a tumble. During warmer months the ASPCA see’s a dramatic increase in injured animals as a result of “High Rise Syndrome” which occurs when pets, “mostly cats-fall out of windows or doors and are seriously or fatally injured.” So be sure all screens are secured and keep, “all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed and make sure adjustable screens are tightly secured..”
9. Splash Safely- never leave your pet around a pool unsupervised and make sure they wear flotation devices when on boats. This may sound silly but not all dogs are strong swimmers and be sure to rinse your furry friend off after they are done swimming as salt water and chlorine water can be irritants to your pupsters skin.
10. Know the Signs- According to Dr. Lila Miller of the ASPCA, “ symptoms of overheating in pets include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. They can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.” Also the ASPCA notes that, “animals with flat faces, like Pugs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively.”
Here is to a safe and sunny summer!!!
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