In the warmer summer months, there are precautions we need to take to help keep our dogs healthy and safe.
Regular grooming can prevent summer skin problems such as flea infestation, especially for dogs with heavy coats. Fleas thrive in moist, humid climates and live off the blood from their hosts. This can cause itching from the bite itself or simply from the fleas crawling around under your dog’s coat, yuck!
Dry climates can also cause uncomfortable dry itchy skin. The Pooch Mobile uses a unique organic cleansing shampoo together with Lavender Aromacare rinse to help cleanse and moisture the skin and coat.
Having your dog washed regularly on a 2-4 week year round schedule, will help keep your dog’s skin and coat in top condition, all summer long. Your dog will not only look beautiful, his coat will be clean, soft and smell amazing. Also, helps reduce shedding.
Always provide your dog access to shelter from the harsh sun and heat. Trees with large canopies can be planted. You can construct a shelter using timber, insulation and shade material. Wind flow is also important for keeping animals cool; consider this when deciding the location of the shelter.
Make sure your dog has fresh, cool, clean water available. Dogs drink more on hot days and water warms up quickly. Two areas to obtain fresh water from is also a good idea. Water bowls should be large enough and designed so they cannot be overturned. Be sure to check water bowls night and morning to ensure there is adequate water, and scrub all bowls weekly to prevent and eliminate slime and bacteria.
Dogs need exercise even when it is hot, but extra care needs to be taken with older dogs, short-nosed dogs, and those with thick coats. The best time for walks and playtime is in the cool of the early morning or evening.
When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog stand on hot asphalt or concrete as his body can heat up quickly and sensitive paw pads can burn. Look for alternative surfaces such as cool grass.
Remember – if the surface is too hot for you to stand on, it’s too hot for your dog.
Dog can get sunburned too, and he may require sunscreen on his or her nose and ear tips. Dogs with light-colored noses or light-colored fur on their ears are particularly vulnerable to sunburn and skin cancer.
Heat stroke is a very serious life-threatening disease that can affect dogs quite rapidly. Dark colored dogs are particularly prone to heat stroke due to the fact that their dark coat absorbs heat. Other medical factors that predispose your dog to heat stroke are obesity, laryngeal paralysis, and heart disease. Some common early signs of heat stroke include panting, excessive salivation, hyper-excitement and increased rectal temperature. Heat stroke can affect every organ in the body; if you suspect that this is taking place; seek immediate veterinary attention for your pet.
If you do have a dog that is afraid of thunder, place him in a safe environment where he cannot escape. If your dog finds a place where he feels safe (like under the bed) leave him there; don’t try to pull him out. Putting a blanket, coat or towel over your dog can have a calming effect.
Masking the sound of the thunder with an air conditioner, vacuum cleaner, or television might help your dog relax. Music can help calm your dog – classical is best.
See your vet for medication that may be suitable to calm your dog if he is particularly fearful.