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Protect Fido from the Dog Days of Summer


With the summer season well underway, the California Department of Public Health is reminding families to protect their four-legged family members from the heat. Here are tips for protecting your pet from hot weather:

Never leave your pet in a parked car. Even cracked windows won't protect your pet from overheating or suffering from heat stroke during hot summer days.

Exercise your dog in the early morning or evening hours instead of during the middle of the day when it's the hottest. If your dog or cat is out during the day, remember that asphalt and concrete can get very hot and burn the pads of your pet's feet. Your pet must always have shelter available to protect it from extreme temperatures and inclement weather. Keep in mind, too, that pets who are older or overweight are more likely to overheat during hot weather.

Keep your pet away from unfamiliar yards and grassy areas, since many people treat their lawns with pesticides at this time of year. Provide your pet with fresh, cool water every day in a tip-proof bowl.

Keep your pet well-groomed, but resist the temptation to shave off all of his hair in an effort to keep him cool. A pet's coat will protect him from getting sunburned. The coat also acts as cooling insulation for most animals.

Keep your pet away from spots or puddles of auto coolant in the garage, driveway, or parking lots. The sweet taste of this poisonous liquid is tempting to animals, but could lead to a fatal result.

Don't let your dog ride in the back of an open vehicle like a pick-up truck. Unless your dog is riding in the cab with you, your dog could bounce or jump out of the moving vehicle. If your pet must travel in the back of an open vehicle, make sure he's safely tethered to the center of the bed where he's unable to reach the sides and is able to stand or sit on a slip-proof and cool surface.

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Tags: Health, Pets, Safety

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