Hot Cars - You've seen the posts on Facebook, and the stories on the news. Do not leave your dog in a parked car. Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont have laws against leaving animals in a car. As a matter of fact, according to Animal Law's table of State Laws www.animallaw.info, in NH a second offense is considered a Class B Felony.
The best rule of thumb: if you can't take your dog with you, don't take your dog with you!
Some people think a "tough dog" can stand these high temperatures. That's not true. High temperatures cook things. Even on a 60 degree day, in the sun the inside temp can reach 100! Even when the windows are left open.
Bug Bites - Keep your dog up to date on heartworm and tick/flea prevention. Consider Lyme prevention if you hike a lot or have a "low rider". If your dog gets stung by a bee or wasp, and exhibits swelling near the eyes, nose or mouth, watch them very closely for the first hour or two. Swelling in these areas can lead to problems with breathing or swallowing. If they seem to be struggling, call your veterinarians office immediately. They will let you know the best treatment for your pet's size, breed, and age. While mosquito, ant or fleabites aren't necessarily dangerous, constant scratching and biting can lead to an infection.
Landscaping - The following plants can be harmful to pets: Sago Palm, Rhododendron, Azalea, Lily of the Valley, Oleander, Foxglove and Kalanchoe. They can cause serious illness or death! If you already have these on your property watch your pets around them. Also watch them around fertilizers, lawn treatments, cocoa mulch (can be deadly and is very attractive to dogs), insecticides, and compost. In a new garden, use pet-friendly versions. If you and your dog have just returned from walking the neighborhood, wipe paws with a damp cloth to remove any chemical residue from lawn treatments or insecticides.
Water Safety - Some dogs love the water, and some don't. Some, due to their build, just can't swim. Barrel-chested dogs, like bull dogs and some terriers are front heavy and cannot keep their head above water. Solution? Get your dog a life vest. Make sure to keep them out of the way of boat motors, heavy waves, and large groups of swimmers. Also, watch the amount of water they drink. Salt water is not good for dogs and can cause vomiting, and dehydration. Fresh water can also cause problems. Instead, make sure to keep a supply of fresh water and a clean water bowl handy on every trip.
Sunburn - Dogs with light colored noses or very short fur are susceptible to sunburn and skin cancer. Do not use human sunscreen on them, but instead purchase fragrance free pet sunscreen. For dogs with very thin or white fur, you can also put a t-shirt on them to protect their back and belly.
Our pets rely on us for their safety. If your dog is a member of your family, treat them as family!
Some great resources for traveling and vacationing with pets can be found at:
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