Safety Throughout the Season

There are many different dangers that your pet is exposed to throughout the year. Many of the dangers are dependent on the season, such as rattlesnakes during the summer and holiday decorations in the winter. While this is not meant to be an all-inclusive list, we have tried to highlight the most common dangers below for the summer and winter seasons.

Summer

During the summer, your pet can be exposed to many different dangers, including fireworks, heat, and parasites. Being aware of these dangers and taking precautions can keep your pet safe and healthy through the summer months.

Rattlesnakes!

As the weather warms up, your pet will likely be spending more time outside. Make sure that fresh drinking water is available at all times, and avoid excessive exercise during the hottest times of the day. Signs of heat stroke include excessive panting, drooling, bright red gums, weakness, and/or seizures. If you suspect heat stroke, wet your pet down with cool water and contact your veterinarian immediately.

If your pet will be spending time in the car, never leave your pet unattended in a parked car. Temperatures can reach up to 120° when parked in the sun.

Keeping your pet up-to-date on vaccines and on monthly parasite prevention is especially important during the summer months because of the increased exposure to diseases such as parvo or kennel cough, as well as intestinal parasites such as roundworms or hookworms.

During fireworks celebrations keep your pet secured indoors. Many pets panic and can escape from the yard and get lost.

A Fear-Free Fourth

Being aware of these dangers and planning accordingly can help lead to an enjoyable summer for both you and your pet.

Winter

During the fall and winter seasons, pet owners prepare for the cold weather and festive time by unpacking “holiday” labeled boxes and searching out the right tools to fight the approaching chill. Antifreeze, tinsel, and all manner of décor find their way near your pets’ curious eyes and noses.

Unfortunately, some of these seemingly harmless holiday details can be dangerous in the wrong paws. To keep the festivities accident free, be on the watch for some key fido and feline hazards. As you are readying the car and driveway be sure to watch for de-icing products on your pet’s paws and fur as they can irritate the skin and have potential for other conditions. Wipe the paws and especially the tummy area when he/she comes in from outside to prevent this.

Windshield washer fluid should be stowed away as well, because the methanol in it can cause gastric upset. Antifreeze is a danger with a sweet taste that attracts both dogs and cats so clean up and put it away after using. If you suspect that antifreeze has been ingested call your veterinarian immediately as swift treatment is crucial.

Holiday decorations like tinsel, glass, lights & metal ornaments, and ribbons can be played with, broken and ingested leading to intestinal damage. Ribbons, string, and tinsel can actually cut through the intestinal lining and cause infections. These situations can easily call for surgical removal. Holiday presents can be torn open and ingested causing similar symptoms.

When hanging Christmas lights be extra careful about securing electrical cords out of “chewing” range from pets, especially those young ones, as they can cause electrical shock if the wires become exposed. Artificial snow contains harmful chemicals if eaten or inhaled, so keep the snow globes and machines far away from your pet.

Making sure that all decorations and cold weather preventatives are out of your pets’ reach will ensure a more joyous holiday for both you and your pet.