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As much as we like to think of our pets as one of us, at the end of the day they are all animals. That is to say, they love to be outdoors and play in their natural habitat. The outdoors is a great place for your furry friend to play, exercise, and explore new things the world has to offer. Of course, this does not mean that the world beyond the fence of your house is one-hundred percent safe for your dog or cat. Whether your pet is in the backyard or wandering around the neighborhood, it is good to be mindful of the potential hazards that your pet may face on their many adventures and understand what you can do a a pet parent to prevent these dangers from harming your little one.
What to Do about the Weather
Pet owners can do many things to make their friends comfortable when the elements are rough. First and foremost, pets should always have a means of shelter when outside, no matter the type of weather. A doghouse can provide shade on a hot day, protection from rain or snow, or warmth on a chilly evening. If a doghouse does not seem like a viable option, a covered porch or a small tent could work as an alternative. Cover the shelter with fluffy pillows or blankets to make the shelter feel like home. While your pooch runs around outside, make it a point to check their food and water bowls often. In extreme weather, the water can evaporate or freeze over relatively fast. In addition, investing in spill-proof bowls can ensure your dog does not go long periods without water.
There are other precautions you should take during the different seasons. When the weather starts to warm up, sunblock for shorthaired dogs is a must. A dog’s snout, nose, ears, and tail are exposed and therefore vulnerable to the sun’s harmful rays. Just like humans, sunscreen should be well applied to sensitive areas and reapplied often. On summer walks, make sure to bring plenty of water bottles or spray bottles to give your pooch a well-deserved cool-down. In addition, be able to identify the key signs of heatstroke, such as excessive panting, drooling, or reddened gums. As always, never leave a dog in a hot car for any reason. A stagnant car’s temperature can skyrocket in a matter of minutes, so it is very dangerous for your dog to endure even a moment of this pain.
In the Backyard
The backyard is one of the best places to let your pet run free while being able to keep an eye on them. Still, this does not mean that a backyard does not come without its own hazards. To begin, find a home for your trashcans that your pet cannot call home. Garbage is filled with disease-causing bacteria, foods that your pet cannot digest, or toxic or sharp remnants from around the house. To keep their noses out of the trash, try using trashcans with tight tops. Place broken glass and tin into cans in the event that the bag rips open.
Another threat posed to pets is something that is actually meant for pests. Bait traps are necessary to rid yards of unwanted insects and rodents, but some are potent enough to accidentally hurt our little friends. Pet-proof bait traps are the best option when tackling this issue, but hardly anything can replace direct adult supervision. The same issue goes for weed killers and fertilizers, so the best alternative is to store non-toxic weed killers away from your pets.
Wondering about Walks?
What dog doesn’t love a good outing with their owner? While your dog sees this opportunity as an exciting expedition, it is important that you know what the outside has in store for your pup. Before any pet ventures outside, it is critical that they have the basics such as a microchip, all necessary vaccinations, and registration. This is done in case your pet becomes lost or comes in contact with certain diseases.
In addition to standard vaccinations, do your best to keep your pet flea and tick-free, whether it is through a pill, collar, or spray. Tick and fleas can irritate your dog and give them some terrible diseases in the process. Standing water is also a perfect home for many types of bacteria that can make your dog sick, so steer clear of big puddles. Finally, be cautious when approaching unknown animals. Wild animals could possibly have rabies, which is extremely dangerous to you and your pet.
Even when considering only a few areas pets are found, it is astounding how many dangers jeopardize your pet’s safety on a daily basis. While this is true, you shouldn’t fear everything that your pet comes in contact with. Instead, understand that you need to be slightly more precautions when it comes to your pets. Most of the tips previously offered would be things that an average person would not have to even think about. So, as a pet owner, you have to think about what you can do to make your pet more comfortable and happier. Even the smallest change can make a difference to your pet.