Protect Your Pet This Summer

There’s so much to look forward to in the summer—from longer days to great weather and everything in between. It’s a truly magical time of the year, and for many of us, there’s nothing quite like sharing it with our favorite furry pals. However, it’s important to remember that our dogs and cats need some extra TLC in the hotter months so that they can stay happy and healthy. Here are just a few ways that you can make sure your pet stays cool and comfortable this summer!

Visit the Vet. Whether you’re a veteran pet owner or you’ve just adopted your first pup or kitty, it’s important to visit the veterinarian before the summer so you can start the warmer months armed with any foreknowledge you might need of the warmer months. This is a great opportunity to get information on any summer dangers you may need to look out for, such as ticks, heatstroke, and even heartworm.

Water. This pretty much goes without saying, but it’s important that your pet, especially on the hottest and most humid of days, has plenty of fresh water to make sure that they stay cool and hydrated. If you notice your pal isn’t interested in their water or is having a hard time drinking, slip an ice cube or two or some frozen blueberries (DOGS ONLY) in there and give your friend a treat!

Groom. Just like getting your hair cut short for the summer, your pets will need some grooming to ensure their body temperature isn’t too high. Brush cats and dogs alike more regularly this summer to keep their coats light, or visit your local groomer (The Loving Tails Spa at 42-10 34th Ave. is a great neighborhood spot) to keep your longer-haired dog’s coat in check.

Cats should be brushed a lot! They predominantly self-groom by licking their fur, and they will be shedding—a lot. So if you don’t enjoy cleaning up hairballs, a good brushing several times a week will help.

Stay Out of the Sun. While it’s always fun to sit out and feel the sun’s warmth, make sure you keep an eye out for your pets. Prolonged, direct sunlight speeds dehydration and makes your friend susceptible to heat stroke—not to mention the fact that asphalt and pavement heated by the sun can burn the delicate pads of your pet’s paws. Make sure to get your pet to shade or air conditioning fairly regularly throughout the day, and make doubly sure to never leave any animal in a locked, parked car (at any time, but especially in the heat of June, July and August).

—Bronwyn Davila

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2018-06-01 digital edition