Summer, Summer, Summertime

Heatstroke
Pets are extremely susceptible to heatstroke during these hot summer days. Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean your pet wants to be outdoors all day. Pets should not be exercised during extreme heat and certain breeds should not be exercised at all during the summer months. If your pet is outside make sure they have access to fresh, cold water at all times. Also, make sure your pet has access to a shady area at all times while outside.
Signs of heatstroke include: panting heavily, staring glassy eyes, anxious expression, high fever, rapid heartbeat, vomiting and collapse. Heatstroke is a medical emergency and your pet should be taken to the veterinarian immediately. If you suspect your pet has heatstroke you can lower their body temperature by applying towels soaked in cool water to the UNDERSIDE of their body and get them to Wicomico Veterinary Hospital immediately. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet too!

Lawn Fertilizer/Insect or Plant Chemicals
Summer can be a time when we fertilize our lawns, trying to keep it green and healthy. After fertilizer is applied make sure that you follow the manufacturer recommendations on how long your pets need to be off the lawn. Some symptoms of fertilizer poison are vomiting and diarrhea. If you suspect your pet may have been poisoned, please seek treatment immediately.
Many flowers and plants are toxic to pets, please obtain a list of toxic plants before your pets eat them, or before you plant them in an area you know your pet will frequent. For a list of plants please go to our links page and click on the ASPCA Animal Poison Control link.
Insect repellants and repellant applied to plants to keep insects away can also be toxic to your pets. Always follow manufacturer recommendations before using any of these products around your pet. If your pet has ingested any type of chemicals, please seek veterinary care immediately.

Beach Days
Summer can be a great time to take your dog to the beach. But remember, sand can be extremely hot and can easily burn the pads on your dog’s feet. It is best to avoid the beach in the middle of the day, early morning or early evening is the best time for your dog.
Remember that drinking ocean water can cause diarrhea if your dog drinks too much; some dogs only require a little before diarrhea begins. Make sure to provide plenty of fresh water for your dog while at the beach. Sand burrs can also cause a problem if they become lodged in your dog’s pads or paw’s, try to avoid areas that may be heavily covered with these burrs.

BBQs
Cookouts and family reunions are great summertime activities. However, the food we often enjoy at these events can make pets sick and even cause Pancreatitis, which is very serious. You should always bring your dog’s own food and treats to these types of events. Also, you should make sure the company knows not to feed your dog from the table. The host should be conscience of the trash receptacle as well, we all know how a dog’s nose will sniff out the things he or she desires. Cooked bones can be very dangerous if ingested by your pet, make sure all lids are secure and out of reach from your four legged friends.

Parasites
Fleas, ticks and mosquitoes can be extremely pesky this time of year. At Wicomico Veterinary Hospital we recommend your pet be on flea, tick and heartworm prevention ALL YEAR LONG, even though summer is when they seem the worst. Even if your pet is “inside only” these parasites can easily make their way into your home.
Ticks can transmit a myriad of diseases that can become life threatening to your pet. Mosquitoes transmit heartworm disease to cats and dogs, with just one bite from an infected mosquito. Heartworm disease is fatal if left untreated. Fleas often cause FAD (flea allergy dermatitis) to many pets. This can occur from the saliva of just one flea bite. Certain life stages of the flea are extremely resistant to pesticides and even freezing weather, that’s why it’s important to prevent fleas rather than combat them.
Wicomico Veterinary Hospital has many different types of preventions for all the parasites listed above. Your pets will thank you for taking such great care of them.


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