Are you pet-prepared this summer?
August 7, 2019
Enjoying warm weather and being outside as much as possible is all part of a fulfilling summer. But the season can present real problems for your pet. Here, Edgewood Vets head vet Jürgen lists the six most common perils to avoid
1. Parasite bites
Parasites can be a problem all year round, but they’re most common in the warmer months. Fleas, ticks and worms are more likely to pester your pet during this time of year, so make sure you’re treating them regularly.
2. Hot weather
The obvious stress factor for our pets this season is soaring temperatures. Heat can cause animals to suffer from dehydration and severe discomfort. Not only that, but long hours outside in high temperatures can lead to heatstroke. Make sure your pets have access to shade and fresh water at all times.
Much like humans, pets can suffer from sunburn, especially if their fur is particularly thin. Keep in mind how hot pavements and roads can get in high summer, so try to prevent your pets going outside at the hottest time of day to protect delicate paws. Talk to our head nurse, Caroline, about sunscreen for your pet if you’re concerned.
4. Getting lost
We fling open our windows and doors much more frequently during the summer, which provides your pets with plenty of opportunity to explore. Be mindful of your pet’s whereabouts at all times; and make sure they are microchipped so that you’ll be able to track them down quickly, if he or she does go missing.
Some cats and dogs suffer from noise phobias and they may be frightened by thunderstorms. As a result, they could display anxious or abnormal behaviour during this muggy time of year. Talk to us about pheromones to help keep your pet calm if they seem nervous in stormy weather.
6. Grass seeds
What problems can grass seeds cause?
The seeds typically fall off long grass and embed themselves in a dog’s paws, ears, eyes, nostrils, armpits, groin, penis sheath, vulva or other areas of skin, causing painful wounds and infections. Running through long dry grass increases the risk of inhaling a grass seed into the lungs.
What dogs are at risk of problems with grass seeds?
All dogs can be affected but the most susceptible are those with hairy toes that enjoy running through long grass, such as spaniels.
How do I tell if my dog has been affected by grass seeds?
The initial tell tale sign that your dog has a grass seed in its skin is that of licking the affected area, followed by a localised swelling and the loss of hair, followed by an increasing lameness of the affected leg.
Is there anything I can do to protect my dog from grass seeds?
It is prudent to avoid areas where there is long grass or short grass that has been allowed to go to seed. It is advisable to get your dog’s hair clipped away from the feet.
What should I do if I think grass seeds are causing problems for my dog?
Your pet must be taken to the vet if you think they are being aggravated by a grass seed. Grass seeds require removal, as they can’t be broken down by the body’s white blood cells.