Summer Precautions For Your Pet

By: Elizabeth Alexander, DVM

Our summer months, in Greenville SC, can be some of the best months of the year.  The weather is good, the sun is out, there are lots of outdoor activities to enjoy.  But as we get out there and explore all the fun, it’s important to keep some considerations for our furry family members in mind.

Hydration is Key:

Just like humans, dogs and cats need to stay hydrated to regulate their body temperature. Make sure your pet always has access to fresh and clean water, whether indoors or outdoors. When on-the-go, bring a portable water bowl, and offer water frequently, especially during exercise or playtime.

Avoid the Hottest Hours:

During peak daytime temperatures, it’s best to limit your pet’s outdoor activities. Avoid going for walks or engaging in strenuous activities during the hottest hours, typically between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Instead, go for morning or evening walks when the temperature is cooler. If your pet enjoys spending time in the yard, provide plenty of shaded areas for them to relax and avoid direct sunlight.

Protect Your Dog’s Paws:

Hot pavement or sand can cause severe burns on your dog’s paw pads. Before going for a walk, test the ground by placing your hand on it for a few seconds. If it feels too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog. Choose grassy or shaded areas for walks, or consider using protective dog booties.

Keep Up Those Monthly Preventions:

All types of creatures enjoy the warmer months of the year, including parasites.  Make sure to keep your dogs and cats on monthly prevention to protect against fleas, ticks, heartworms, and intestinal parasites.  Keep your pet from lingering outside during dusk and dawn, when mosquitos (the carrier of Heartworms) are most active.

Take Precautions for Water Activities:

If you plan to take your dog swimming, ensure they are comfortable in the water and provide a life jacket if needed. After swimming – rinse off chlorine or saltwater, use ear cleaner and dry out ears, and make sure there is access to fresh water.

Protect from Sunburn:

Just like humans, pets can get sunburned too, especially those with lighter or thinner fur. Apply pet-safe sunscreen to exposed areas, such as the nose and ears, if your pet will be spending extended periods in the sun.

Never Leave Your Pet in a Parked Vehicle:

Leaving a pet inside a parked car, even for a few minutes, can be fatal. The temperature inside a car can rise rapidly, reaching dangerous levels within minutes, even with the windows cracked. If you need to run errands, leave your pet at home in a cool and safe environment.

Be Mindful of Fireworks and Loud Noises:

Fireworks, thunderstorms, and other loud noises can cause anxiety and stress in pets. More pets go missing on the 4th of July than any other time of the year. Plan ahead, create a safe and quiet space for pets indoors, and consider consulting your veterinary team for calming products if needed.

Recognize the Signs of Heatstroke:

Be familiar with the signs of heatstroke, including excessive panting, drooling, lethargy, rapid heartbeat, vomiting, and collapse. If you suspect your pet is experiencing heatstroke, move them to a cooler area, offer water to drink (but don’t force it), and wet their body with cool, not cold, water. Immediately contact a veterinarian for further instructions and professional medical care.

With some extra care and precautions, you can keep your pet safe and comfortable during the summer months. Keep hydration in mind, avoid areas that are just too hot, and plan ahead for trips and holidays.  By taking these steps, you’ll help ensure that both you and your furry friends can have a fun and enjoyable summer.

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My husband and I love this place. They always love seeing our cat Mango when we bring him in each month for his medicine and to get his nails... read more

Jason R.

The staff are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable! I've taken both my cats there since they were kittens and they are always so good with... read more

Meetra M.

To my Ambassador family, thank you again for taking such great care of Mauser. You have made going to the vet easy and worry free. Great service... read more

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Jason R.

My husband and I love this place. They always love seeing our cat Mango when we bring him in each month for his medicine and to get his nails trimmed. Today we will taking our new puppy Melon for her first visit. I would highly recommend Ambassador Animal Hospital if you are looking for a great place to take your fur babies. 10/10.

Meetra M.

The staff are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable! I've taken both my cats there since they were kittens and they are always so good with them.

Shelly J.

To my Ambassador family, thank you again for taking such great care of Mauser. You have made going to the vet easy and worry free. Great service starting at the door right into the vet room!! Both vets are amazing they take their time with your pet and explain everything . Front desk is quick and efficient and always friendly to you and your pet!!

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