3083 Highway 175  Lakeport, California  95453      707.263.5380     Fax:  707.263.1525

Pet Safety

Wasson Memorial Veterinary Clinic

HOT WEATHER

Every year, many pets suffer and die from heat exhaustion because their owner thought it would be "OK" to leave the pets in the vehicle. Nothing is further from the truth. Below are several tips and ideas to ensure your pet's safety during the hot summer months.

• Never leave your pet in the car. The sun can raise the temperature in the car to 120 degrees Fahrenheit within minutes.

• Your pet needs access to lots of fresh water during the summer, so check water bowls several times a day to be sure it's      full. If you go outside, be sure to bring plenty of water for both of you. • If they're extra thirsty, pets are bound to drink 
   something they shouldn't drink. Puddles of what looks like water may be on the ground, but they may include antifreeze      or other dangerous chemicals. Antifreeze has a sweet taste to dogs and cats, but it is toxic and can kill. • Your pet can        get sunburned, and can cause some of the same problems as with people: pain, peeling, and skin cancer. Keep your pet      out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. When you do go outside, rub a bit of pet safe sunblock on unprotected areas      like the tips of the ears, the skin around the lips, and the tip of the nose.  Some sunblock can be dangerous to your pets.    A rule of thumb: If it's safe for babies, it's safe for your pets. • Don't overdo it in the heat. Keep walks to a gentle pace. If    your pet is panting a lot or seems exhausted, it's time to stop. • Even if they're in the shade, animals can get sick 
   quickly on hot days. Keep them inside as much as possible. If you have to leave them outside, check on them regularly.

• Watch for Heatstroke - It can be fatal! If you suspect your pet has heatstroke, call a veterinarian immediately. In the            meantime, lower the animal's body temperature by applying towels soaked in cool water to the hairless areas of the            body. Often the pet will respond after only a few minutes of cooling, only to falter again with his temperature soaring          back up or falling to well below what is normal. If you suspect that your pet is suffering from heat stroke, contact your        veterinarian immediately.

Signs of Heatstroke are: 
                 • Panting                                               • Staring                                          • Anxious expression 
                 • Refusal to obey commands                • Warm, dry skin                              • High fever 
                 • Rapid heartbeat                                 • Vomiting                                        • Collapse

Common Household Dangers

Below is a listing of items that should be kept safely

stored and away from your pet:

  • Antifreeze
  • De-icing salts used to melt snow and ice.
  • Chemicals used on lawns and gardens, such as fertilizer and plant food.
  • Cedar and other soft wood shavings, including pine. They emit fumes that may be dangerous to small mammals     like hamsters and gerbils.
  • Human medications including pills and ointments.
  • String, yarn, rubber bands, and dental floss.
  • Toys with removable parts-like squeaky toys or stuffed animals with 
  •     plastic eyes.
  •  Rodenticides, any thing such as squirrel bait or mouse poison.


As a pet owner, there are other areas of the house that should be made "pet-proof" to nsure the health and safety of your pet:

           Keep all electric cords out of reach or covered by a chew-proof guard. 
           Puppies and kittens will chew on anything.
           Don't leave any medicines on tables, chairs, or in open cabinets.
           Cover your outside pool or pond. Many heavily-coated dogs and cats may be unable to swim to safety when                      their coats are soaking wet.
           Keep all painting supplies in closed cabinets.