We all love our dogs but when it comes to their hair being all over the floor, furniture and our clothing we can sometimes become annoyed with them.
Unfortunately, there is nothing that you can do to stop your dog from shedding; but, there are ways that you can control it as it is a natural part of being a dog.
Why Do Dogs Shed?
Shedding is a natural way for dogs to get rid of their old dead hair to get a new coat; this is similar to why human’s hair falls out. Therefore, there is no such thing as a dog that does not shed; however, the amount a dog sheds really depends on the type of breed.
For example, a shepherd dog will shed a lot compared to a Maltese terrier. However, if your dog is shedding more than normal it is important to go visit the veterinarian for a check-up.
This is because it may be related to sunburns, irritating substances, fleas, lice, mites, allergies, pregnancy and even because of some medications.
Ways to Control Shedding in Your Dog
1. Brush Your Dog Frequently
Grooming your dog daily is a great habit that you want to make sure is a part of your daily routine. It will make sure that there is less of your dog’s hair around the house. This means that you will spend less time cleaning and more time to spend with your furry loved one.
In addition, it will help make sure that your dog’s coat is cleaner and softer. When it comes to choosing the best brush for your dog, it really depends on the breed. Therefore, it is a good idea to talk to your groomer to see which one they prefer for you to use on your dog.
2. Feed Your Dog Quality Food
When choosing the brand of food to feed your dog it is important to make sure that food is high quality and is ideally organic. This will make sure that the coat is healthy which will discourage excessive shedding taking place in your home.
The one thing you want to make sure that the food that you are feeding your dog is that it has a good source of digestible protein. One of the main reasons why some dogs shed more than others is because they are allergic to the food; therefore it is always safe to feed them hypoallergenic dog food.
3. Make Bath Time A Regular Occurrence
It is important to make sure you make time to bathe your dog regularly. This is because if your dog has a clean coat it will reduce the amount that they shed. It is recommended to use a gentle oatmeal shampoo that is meant for dogs, which is great as it does not dry their skin.
Also, it is important to avoid using heat to dry your pets fur, as this can increase the amount your dogs sheds. In addition, you do not want to bathe your dog daily as this will also increase shedding; it is recommended to bathe your dog every 2 to 3 weeks.
How to Minimize Shedding Around Your Home
1. Put Your Clothes Away
Your clothes, unfortunately, attract your dog’s hair and/or fur; this is why it is important to hang up your clean clothes before your pet gets their paws on them.
However, it is sometimes impossible to have your clothes free of your dog’s hair or fur. This is when having a lint roller comes in good use, as it picks up any unwanted dog hair or fur that you do not want.
2. Use a Damp Rubber Glove
Damp rubber gloves are great as it helps gather unwanted dog hair or fur from the carpet, floors, and sofas. This will make it easier for you to gather up all the hair which will make it faster to pick it all up and toss it away.
3. Vacuum Carpets Using Baking Soda
Vacuuming is a great way to collect all unwanted fur and/or hair that your four-legged friend leaves around.
However, by sprinkling baking soda all over your carpet makes this technique even more powerful with regards to minimizing shedding around your house.
This is because it loosens the hair in the carpet so you are able to pick up more and it also deodorizes the carpet all at the same time.
4. Dry Rubber Squeegee
When it comes to your carpet there are always stubborn hairs or fur from your pet that are impossible to get rid of.
However, by using a dry rubber squeegee and using short strokes it can help gather those hairs that seem that you can never get rid of.
5. Electrostatic Dust Mop
If you have hardwood floors or tiles an electrostatic dust mop is a great way to pick up and attract hair that you did not get from sweeping up with a broom.
Dog collars are extremely important to have as they serve so many different purposes.
Collars provide identification which tell other people where this dog lives in case he or she gets lost. Usually attached to a collar is information which includes the dogs name, owners name, a phone number and an address.
A dog collar is also important as it gives you the convenience of walking and exercising your dog in a public and open area because you can attached the dogs collar to a leash. This will allow you to keep your dog safe from other animals and people.
Also a dog collar is the most popular dog accessory and there are so many brands, colors, and more to choose from.
This is why we put together a quick guide that can help you when purchasing your dog a new collar.
How to Choose the Right Collar?
When choosing a collar for your dog it really comes down to comfort and style.
There are many brands and styles to choose from, but the most important thing is that your dog will feel comfortable wearing it all the time. The collar that you choose should have a tag so you can attach your contact information just in case your dog gets lost.
With regards to choosing the right fit, it really depends on the size and the strength of your dog. Most collars will include that information which will help you find the perfect fit. If your dog is a stronger breed than it is a good idea to choose a wider collar for extra strength and support for yourself and your dogs protection when using a leash.
Some Things to Consider
When choosing a collar it is important to understand that it is a lot more than just fit and personal preference.
It is important to consider a collar that will be visible during the night as it will play a big safety role. This is because it allows people in cars to see your dog to help avoid unwanted accidents.
Also it is important to recognize that dogs will grow so make sure you choose a collar that you can adjust and make sure that you are able to leave two fingers in between the collar and your dog’s neck.
Why Choose a Leather Collar?
Leather collars are made from natural material that comes with many benefits.
They last a really long time and they can handle chewing and water as many other synthetic collars cannot. Also the natural softening of leather will also make the collar more and more comfortable and time goes by.
Also leather collars do not only come in the standard black and brown colors but there are a variety to choose from.
Some colors collars come in include: red, pink, green, blue, etc.
Top Leather Collars to Choose From:
Weaver Leather Sundance Dog Collar
The weaver leather sundance dog collar is thick which is great if you own a stronger breed of dog.
It is unique as it is crafted with brown leather and oiled to bring out the rich organic colors. There is also a heart border and other border accessories that are stamped down so they do not become a choking hazard.
This leather collar is also known for its durability and strength.
|Weaver Leather Sundance||5 out of 5||$$$|
Perri’s Padded Leather Dog Collar
This collar is made in the United States and uses top quality leather.
There are a variety of colors to choose from which include blue/black, black/sky blue, black/pink, brown/purple and many more color combinations.
The collar is also soft as the padding is made from soft lamb skin. There are a number of sizes to choose from which makes this collar suitable for a variety of dog sizes.
|Perri’s Padded Leather Collar||4.5 out of 5||$$|
Kakadu Pet Paw Print Leather Dog Collar
The kakadu pet paw print leather dog collar is a fashionable collar that comes in three colors: black, red and tan and also has adorable paw print stubs.
It is also available in three different sizes: medium, large and extra large.
In addition, the quality is really good as it is made from 100% durable leather material.
|Kakadu Pet Paw Print Leather||4 out of 5||$$|
Kakadu Pet Studly Leather Studded Dog Collar
The kakadu pet studly leather studded dog collar comes in three different colors: black, red and tan.
This particular dog collar comes with a fashion statement with it “stud spikes that stick out”.
Not to worry, these studs will not hurt your dog as they are only there for fashion purposes only. This collar will also last a long time as it is made up of 100% real leather.
However, this collar is not suited for all dogs as it comes in only medium, large, extra-large and extra-extra-large; therefore it makes it a great collar for the larger breeds.
|Kakadu Pet Studly Leather Studded Collar||4 out of 5||$|
Perri’s Standard Leather Dog Collar
Perri’s Standard Leather Dog Collar is a top quality collar that is Amish made in the United States.
It comes in two colors: black and havana.
This collar offers you the ability to personalize it with a nameplate which means that your dog will never go unknown. In addition, there are a number of sizes that you can choose from.
|Perri’s Standard Leather Collar||4.5 out of 5||$$$|
Halloween is a holiday that most people look forward to every year. It is a time for people to indulge in chocolate and candy, and dress up as anyone or anything that they want. It is also a time for fireworks, loud noise and staying up late. However, it is important to understand that Halloween can be dangerous and frightening for pets with many potential risks. Therefore, we put together a list of possible Halloween hazards that you should look out for this year.
1. No Candy or Chocolate
The one main component of Halloween is lots and lots of candies and chocolates. But for pets this has red flags written all over it. Chocolates are especially poisons in pets, as they can cause vomiting, diarrhea, rapid breathing, increased heart rate, coma and even death. The majority of candies are just as dangerous because they contain a substance called xylitol, which can make your pet ill. So this Halloween, make sure the candy bowl is away from your pet and instead, give your pet a treat that is meant for them.
2. Keep Clear of Popular Halloween Plants
Popular Halloween plants like pumpkin and decorative corn won’t kill your pet. But they are something that can cause them great discomfort and a mess that you don’t want to clean. This is because these plants are known to cause stomach upset if your pet ingests them. In addition, they can become a choking hazard if large pieces are swallowed.
3. Electrical Cords & Wires
Electrical cords and wires are a hazard for pets in general; however, during a holiday like Halloween there seems to be a lot more just because of the directions and lighting people tend to use to decorate the house. If chewed on, wires can cause burns and cuts that can sometimes be life-threatening, so make sure they are hidden and put somewhere that is hard to reach.
4. Pumpkin Decorations
A decorated pumpkin seems to be a staple decoration for Halloween. However, they can be dangerous towards pets when you choose to add a candle. Pets can accidently knock a pumpkin over causing an accident or can even pose of risk of them getting burned. So if you do decide to use a candle in a pumpkin make sure that it is high enough for a pet not to come into contact with it.
5. Halloween Costumes
Halloween costumes are the best part of Halloween because you can be whoever you want to be; however, your pet might not share the similar feelings as you. Some pets find Halloween costumes to be annoying and uncomfortable and if this is the case it is best not to dress up your pet. You also need to be careful with the choice of a Halloween costume. This is because some costumes can constrict movement, hearing, and the ability to breathe.
6. Keep Your Pets Indoors & confined
When trick-or-treaters are out there will constant knocking and ring of the doorbell all night and children in all kinds of costumes. As a result, your pet may become scared and stressed; therefore, it is a good idea to keep them in a quiet room in which they are comfortable. In addition, you do not want to leave your pets outdoors as many pets are poisoned and harmed unfortunately during this time of year.
Many people love to put on and enjoy a display of fireworks during Halloween. But fireworks are extremely dangerous towards pets because they can easily burn them internally and externally. In addition, fireworks have chemicals, which if ingested by your pet, can make them ill.
8. Candy Wrappers
Candy wrappers are often lying around after Halloween and this is a hazard for pets. This is because the wrappers contain foil and/or cellophane which is life threatening if ingested. Sometimes the result is surgical removal, vomiting, and decreased appetite.
9. Glow Sticks
Glow sticks are common during Halloween as they are used as a light source when children trick-or-treating during the night. However, these items are something that pets love to chew on. If ingested they can cause pain and irritation in the mouth. It usually does not lead to death, but it is something that you would want to follow up with your veterinarian.
10. Make Sure Your Pet Has an ID
During Halloween, doors are open and closed frequently which means that your pet can easily leave the home without you knowing. Therefore, it is important to keep their name tags up to date with the correct phone number, name, and address.
When it comes to making a big decision with regards to owning any kind of pet there is a lot of considerations that need to take place before leaping to the idea of becoming a pet owner.
Especially, if you are considering of purchasing or adopting a dog to be a part of your life.
Before you run out and buy a dog make sure that you are 100% prepared and ready for this new and large responsibility.
Here are 5 Signs that will outline that you may not be ready to take on the responsibility of owning a dog:
1. You Are Not Home Enough
If you are an individual who is always super busy with travelling because of work or your time is spent running around because of the family; this might not be the appropriate time to own a dog.
This is because dogs not only need to be fed, walked and taken to the bathroom during certain times, but they also need attention and love throughout each day.
Therefore, having the time is tremendously important and something to consider.
2. You Have Pet Allergies or Someone in the House Does
If you or someone who is allergic to dogs lives in the house you do not want to compromise your own health and quality of life for a dog.
However, if you or someone else in the house suffers from moderate allergies from dogs you may still be able to have one with the proper precautions.
Nevertheless, you should always consult with your doctor before bringing a dog into your home.
3. You Do Not Have Enough Money to Take Care of a Dog
When considering becoming a pet owner you need to keep in mind that there will be a lot of money that is needed in order to take care of a dog.
There is the cost of purchasing a dog which is only the start of a long-term financial commitment.
In addition, there will be food and vet fees which will be ongoing for the rest of your dog’s life. As well as the cost of monthly medications; for example, to prevent fleas and ticks.
So if you are barely making ends meet with your own finances it may not be wise to get a dog.
4. You are Not Good With Long Term Commitments
If you have a type of personality where you have trouble with any kind of long-term commitment then owning a dog may not be for you.
This is because dogs can live up to 20 years which means that they will need you for all of those years. So it is important to realize your present and future commitments before bringing a dog home.
5. You Just Really Really Want a Puppy
If you are wanting to purchase a puppy because they are super cute and everyone seems to have one.
It is important to understand that a puppy does not stay a puppy forever and eventually will become a dog.
Therefore, if you are just fascinated about the adorable puppy phase, then becoming a dog owner might not be for you.
So What Happens if You Are Not Ready For a Dog?
If you are not ready at this moment to own a dog this is not the end of the world. This is because it may just be in a few years you are in a situation where you are ready for a dog.
However, if you still are not ready to own a dog there are still some other options. For instance, you can volunteer at a local pet shelter. Or even visit a friend or a family member who has a dog.
When spring and summer roles around it makes it the perfect opportunity to work on your garden by adding color by planting some beautiful flowers and plants. In addition, many people love to bring summer flowers inside to home just to add some color and brighten up the mood of the house.
What many pet owners do not realize is that some flowers and plants are extremely dangerous and toxic to animals. They can cause serious health issues which can lead to a coma or even death. This is why it is important to educate yourself as a pet owner to avoid deathly accidents.
You can still have a beautiful bright garden but just a garden that is pet friendly.
Here is a list of 24 flowers and plants that you want to avoid at all costs!
- Tulips: the part of the tulip that is extremely toxic is the bulbs; this is because it contains a concentrated toxic. They can cause intense vomiting, depression, diarrhea, hypersalivation, drooling and a lack of appetite.
- Hyacinth: contains toxins called lactones. They can cause drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, increased heart rate, increased respiratory rate and can cause your pet to experience difficulties breathing.
- Daffodils: the bulb of this plant is the most dangerous and toxic when consumed. The toxin that is present in this flower is called lycorine. It can cause vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, depression, low blood pressure and even seizures.
- Lilies: depends on the type of lily to determine how serious the symptoms can be. They can cause ulcers in the mouth, vomiting, diarrhea and drooling.
- Crocus: with these particular flowers the signs of a toxic reaction are not immediate. However, your pet may experience vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, gastro-intestinal disorders, lack of appetite, tremors or seizures.
- Easter Cactus: is extremely dangerous if your pet digested one. They can cause vomiting, diarrhea and depression. The Easter Cactus is even more dangerous towards cats.
- Crown of Thorns: is another flower that you do not want around your pet. They can cause vomiting and diarrhea. This flower has a white and milky sap inside of it and if your pet comes into contact with it, the sap can cause intense pain.
- Azalea: this plant if ingested generally causes mild to server symptoms, depending how much your pet has eaten. Some of the symptoms include, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, depression, cardiovascular disorder, coma or death.
- Crocus: is a plant that is present during the spring and the autumn. However, it is important to note that the crocus plant is highly toxic during the autumn compared to the spring. Some of the symptoms include excessive drooling, abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, gastero-intsinal disorders, and loss of appetite, tremors or seizures.
- Rhododendron: if in contact with your pet this flower can cause vomiting, diarrhea, hypersalivation, weakness, coma, depression or death.
- American Bittersweet: contains a toxic poison called auonymin and sesquiterpene alkaloids that can make your pet to become ill. This plant can cause weakness, vomiting, and/or diarrhea in your pet.
- Foxglove: contains a toxin similar to digitalis or digoxin which is usually found in heart medication used in both humans and veterinary medicine. This plant can cause cardiac arrhythmias, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, cardiac failure and even death.
- Narcissus: contains a toxin called lycorine and other toxins too. This flower can cause vomiting, diarrhea, low blood pressure, tremors and cardiac arrhythmias. The most toxic part of the flower is the bulbs.
- Morning Glory: contains lysergic acid, lysergamide, elymoclavine and chanoclavine which are extremely toxic for your pets. This flower can cause diarrhea, tremors, disorientation, ataxia and anorexia. However, the most toxic part of this flower is the seeds which can cause hallucinations.
- Aloe: is a plant that can cause vomiting, depression, diarrhea, anorexia, tremors and change in urine color.
- Amaryllis: the most toxic part of the flower includes the leaves, stems and the bulbs which contain a toxin called phenanthridine. The symptoms that can occur include vomiting, depression, diarrhea, abdominal pain, drooling and tremors.
- Asparagus Fern: has a toxin called sapogenins which makes this plant so dangerous for plants. This flower can cause gastric upset, vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhea.
- Gypsophila Elegans: also known as baby’s breath contains a toxin called saponins. This flower can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
- Bird of Paradise: is a toxic plant for pets and contains a toxin called hydrocyanic acid. This plant can cause oral irritation, excessive drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty swallowing and incoordination. It is important to note that the most toxic part of the plant is the seeds.
- Buttercup: contains a toxin called protoanemonin which is why you want to make sure your pets stay clear of this flower. They can cause vomiting, diarrhea, depression, drooling and/or a wobbly gait.
- Chrysanthemums: all parts of this plant are generally toxic towards pets. If your pet ingested this plant, it can cause vomiting, diarrhea and drooling.
- Cut Leaf Philodendron: is a toxic plant that can cause oral irritation, burning, drooling, vomiting and difficulties swallowing.
- Dieffenbachia: contains insoluble calcium oxalates and proteolytic enzymes which make this plant toxic towards your pet. The symptoms may include oral irritation, drooling, vomiting and difficulty swallowing.
- Milfoil: has toxins which include glycoalkaloids, monoterpenes and sesquiterpene lactones that causes your pet to become ill if eaten. Some of the symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, depression and hyersalivation.
What Do you Do if your Pet Ingests a Toxic Plant?
If your pet happens to ingest a toxic plant it is suggested by many professionals to induce vomiting in order to get the toxins out of their body. Then it is important to contact the veterinarian and/or poison control center right away.
- Pet Poison Helpline: 1.800.213.6680
- ASPCA Poison Helpline: 1.888.426.4435
Cat’s whiskers may appear as these long cute strong pieces of hair that come out of their face. But have you ever wondered if whiskers serve a larger purpose to cats or if they are just there as an accessory?
Well, it may surprise you that whiskers serve a much larger purpose than just something that makes your cat look adorable.
How Do Whiskers Work?
Many people assume that cat’s whiskers are just like human hair; that it serves no purpose and are just there for looks. However, this assumption is incorrect, as whiskers has a unique and special purpose.
The whiskers are attached to tissue that have many sensory nerve endings and is then connected to the function to the sense of touch. Cats can detect objects through their whiskers without even seeing the object. In addition, they can sense movement and can measure the space before going through something.
Whiskers are just as important or even more important compared to the function of the nose. Additionally, it is really common for cats to have around 12 whiskers above their lip.
Never Trim or Cut Whiskers
Cutting, trimming or even grooming whiskers is something that you NEVER want to do. This is something that should not even be done if you consider the whiskers to be too long or if you just do not like the look of them.
Without whiskers, cats can become disoriented, frightened and even become ill. Additionally, when whiskers are clipped or trimmed it can cause pain and disturb their sensitivity. They are just as important as sound, touch and smell is to us. Cutting whiskers have the same effect if someone took our sight away.
Whiskers alert cats of a painful situation, as touch and sight do the same thing for us humans. However, it is important to know that whiskers shed and grow back naturally so it is important to leave them alone.
Touching your cat’s whiskers will not cause them pain but pulling, cutting and trimming will.
A Form of Navigation
Whiskers also serve the function as a type of navigation system for cats. This is because whiskers have sensory organs that are attached at the ends. Therefore, this makes cats whiskers extremely sensitive towards the smallest changes or shift in their environment.
They measure the distance and the space around them, even without them looking. This allows them to determine if they can fit through a small opening. Whiskers also help cats with navigating through the dark, which is why you see cats active and alert during the night.
As a pet owner, you can tell a lot about your cat’s mood and behavior by just looking and observing their whiskers. For instance, if your cat’s whiskers are hanging loosely this indicates that your cat is relaxed and is calm.
If their whiskers are flattened against their face this is a clear indication that you cat may be frightened or is getting ready for a fight. By having the whiskers to become flattened it allows them not to become damaged. However, when their whiskers are facing forward this means that your cat is alert, you will often see this if your cat is looking for something to hunt.
Moreover, it is important not to just make your judgment based just on your cat’s whiskers. And that it is also important to look at their entire body language before you make an assumption on their mood and/or behavior.
Used for Eye Protection
Whiskers are not just found above the upper lip, but they are also can be found above the eyes; kind of like eyelashes. They actually serve the same purpose as human eyelashes. This is because the whisker, in this case, protects cats from getting things into their eyes; for example, dust and dirt.
Furthermore, the whiskers cause the eye to blink when touched so that it protects cats from potential harm towards their eyes.
There is this myth that when cats get older and age, that their whiskers tend to grow at a faster pace; therefore, being longer.
But in reality they stay and grow at the same speed as if they were just a year old. The only thing that happens to the whiskers when cats get older is that they change in color.
Kind of the same way as humans age our hair becomes lighter and gray. So do not be surprised that as your cat ages that the whiskers turn from white to black; it is simply the cycle of life.
Balance and Whiskers
Many people believe that whiskers have to do with a cats balance. However, this may be true but this is not the only thing that helps cats maintain a balance. As their tail also helps cats maintain and have balance.
Summer is a great season to be a dog. Hikes, and beach days are just some of the things that make most dogs literally jump for joy. However, there are plenty of ways our dogs can get hurt during these active months. No need to worry. With this list of tips, you and your dog will be enjoying the summer weather without a care in the world.
Beating the Heat
It should come as no surprise that heat poses a major risk for dogs in during the hottest months. Unlike us, dogs can’t shed their furry coats like we can with layers of clothing. So, while you are lounging in swim-wear, your dog might be struggling to stay cool under all that hair. In extreme cases, dogs can get heat stroke, which is signified by excessive panting and drooling, vomiting, and collapse. If you suspect your dog of suffering from heatstroke, you will want to make an immediate trip to the vet. With these tips, hopefully it will not come to that.
Walk Your Dog at Cool Times Of Day
The temperature between the hours of 11AM and 5 PM can be sweltering for a dog. Consider taking your dog out when the sun isn’t directly overhead, beating down on your dog’s fur. The outdoor temperature drops significantly before 10AM and after 7PM. Plus, getting a head start on the day by going out in the morning can make you feel good too. And if you’re not a morning person, surely you can appreciate a nice summer sunset.
Keep Off the Pavement
Walking around with bare feet on hot pavement is no pleasant experience for us humans. And while your dog’s paws may be more used to rugged terrain, walking on surfaces hot enough to cook an egg is no treat for them either. Give their paw pads a break and take them to a park or a wooded trail so they can run around on the grass or in the shade.
Don’t Leave Your Dog in a Car
Every summer, local news broadcasts across the country air multiple stories about dogs (and children) who are left inside hot cars and do not make it out alive. And yet, every year, more cases pop up. So just in case you are one of the few people who remain unaware of the dangers of leaving your pets in a hot car, this tip is for you. Don’t do it. The inside of a vehicle can rise to 120 degrees in mere minutes, quickly turning the car into a death chamber for our furry friends. Even with the windows cracked, consequences are often fatal.
Instead, get a friend to watch your dog, or use the drive through. You could also reward pet friendly stores with your business and bring your dog shopping with you. None of us want to see our pets die of heatstroke, so make sure your dog is in a safe place when you run your errands.
Give Your Dog Cooling Options
When you’re hot, what do you do? Perhaps you turn on a fan or mix up an icy cold beverage. Your dog might appreciate the same opportunities. Consider tilting a fan to ground level so the dog can enjoy the cool breeze. You could also add ice cubes to its water to turn down your dog’s core temperature. Your dog might not be able to enjoy a nice slushy piña colada, but some cool ice water on a hot day is something both humans and dogs can enjoy.
Keep an Eye on Your Dog’s Water Levels
During the hot summer months, your dog will surely be drinking more water. Your dog is using the water to survive so it is important that you keep it replenished on a frequent and consistent basis. If you are lucky, you might even live near some trails with water fountains and taps for dogs. Try to frequent these areas on your walks.
Engage in Proper Grooming
The state of your dog’s coat is very important when the temperature rises. It needs to be long enough so that it is protected from the sun, but also manicured to the extent that your dog can be comfortable in the heat. Brush your dog regularly to untangle your dog’s coat and get rid of excess hair. You may even consider giving your dog a haircut (with guidance from your vet).
Avoiding Environmental Hazards
The heat isn’t the only thing dogs and their humans need to watch out for during the summer months. During the summer, there are numerous dangers in the environment which can negatively impact your dog’s health. Here are some things to look out for.
You and your neighbors want to enjoy your yards without having to deal with pesky bugs ruining the party, but you may want to think about how the insecticides being used may impact your dog. How heavy-duty are these insecticides? Are they safe for your dog to be around? What if your dog ate something that was sprayed with these chemicals? These are questions you need to ask yourself before you allow your dog to run freely in the yard.
One major kind of pesticide to avoid is disulfoton pesticide. Ingestion of this pesticide by dogs can lead to seizures, vomiting, diarrhea and even death. Even more troubling, is the fact that disulfoton pesticide is particularly appetizing to dogs, like a toxic salad dressing. Dog owners are advised not to use this sort of pesticide in their yards.
If worrying about harmful insecticides wasn’t bad enough, we also need to be aware of all of the parasitic insects whose populations surge in the summer. Fleas, ticks, chewing lice, mites and mosquitos all want to feast on the delicious, nutritious (from a bug’s perspective) blood of your dog, which can lead to heartworms, Lyme disease and many other terrible conditions. In many cases, if these conditions are left untreated, the consequences can be fatal. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to combat these tiny blood-sucking critters and prevent heartworm and other diseases.
In order to prevent flea and tick infestations, a monthly preventative flea medication is a great option. Flea medications like Frontline Plus kill adult fleas as well as their eggs/larvae, making your dog’s coat inhospitable to fleas. Frontline Plus also kills ticks. Advantage for dogs is another option if you are just trying to target fleas. If you are worried about heartworm, speak to your vet about getting a preventative heartworm medication like Heartgard Plus or Nuheart.
Much like insecticide, fertilizer can be toxic to dogs. They can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and even death. If you come across freshly fertilized soil during your walks or on your neighbor’s lawn, don’t let your dog play in it.
You may want to go the chemical route to getting rid of the weeds in your garden and driveway, but give it a second thought. The chemicals in many herbicides can be harmful to your dog. If you have neighbors who use herbicide, keep your dog away from their lawns until such time that the treatment has been absorbed by the ground below. If you really want to play it safe, a natural alternative to chemical herbicides is corn gluten meal which is considered to be safe for dogs.
Like any one of us, most dogs love a nice dip in the ocean or pool on a hot day. However, our dogs may not be fully aware of all of the chemicals us humans have applied to them. If you are down by a beach, take care to ensure that the particular beach has not been the site of any oil spills, or waste/chemical dumping. If you are by a swimming pool, know that chlorine can be a skin irritant to dogs and can also lead to an upset stomach if ingested at high volumes. To avoid your dog ingesting pool water, ensure that your dog is getting enough fresh water outside the pool. You may even want to get a small kiddie pool just for your dog and fill it up with the hose.
Many common allergies in dogs are in full swing during the summer months. This includes pollen, mold, and fleas. If you are not aware of any particular allergies in your dog, be on the lookout. The signs of allergic reaction in dogs are much like those in humans. Itching, sneezing, coughing are all indicators that your dog’s allergies could be acting up. If you suspect your dog might be allergic to something in its environment, talk to a veterinarian. They may prescribe an atopic dermatitis medication like Atopica or they may advise you to give your dog an Anti-allergen pet shampoo.
After reading this, it may sound as though summer is fraught with danger and peril for dogs. Don’t worry. Now that you know what to look out for and the best practices of dealing with the summer environment, you and your dog are already ahead of the game.