Summer safety for pets: Feelgood Pet's top tips!

Summer Safety for dogs and cats Feelgood Health top tips

Pet parents often don’t realize how harsh the summer season can be for their beloved pets. Yes, while it’s the perfect time to enjoy long walks, swimming and playing with your pet, there are also summer hazards that could harm your pet’s health.

Here are some handy tips and precautions for pet owners to keep their dogs summer safe and healthy!

1. Heat stroke and exhaustion

One of the most common dangers of summer is heat stroke in dogs. Dogs eliminate heat by panting but if the environment is too hot, panting becomes ineffective and their body temperature rises very quickly. 
This is usually the result of leaving him in the car in hot weather, exercising in heat or not providing shade if he is kept outdoors.  Flat faced breeds are particularly prone to heat stroke and should not be driven long distances unless you have air conditioning in your car.

What you can do:
Never leave your pet in a hot car even if the windows are open or if it’s only for a few minutes. Your car becomes a furnace because it traps the sun’s heat. The temperature in a car rockets to over 40°C in just a few minutes.

If your pet suffers heat stroke, try to lower their temperature by moving him to a cool area. Soak your pet with cold water – use wet towels covering the whole body, especially around the neck and back area. Stop cooling measures when your pet reaches 37.5 degrees. Even if your pet recovers, take him to the vet immediately for treatment.

On hot days, make sure that you keep your pets indoors. If they are going to be spending time outdoors, provide plenty of shade and fresh water. A good idea is to add ice cubes to their water to keep it cooler for longer. Remember, to also carry water with you if you walk your dog, but remember to allow them time to cool down before offering water as a dog will not drink until his temperature drops.
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2. Fleas, ticks and parasites

Summer time provides the perfect breeding ground for fleas and ticks to thrive on pets. If left untreated pets develop flea allergy dermatitis which causes skin problems and discomfort. Other pesky insects which are bothersome to our pets during summer include flies and mosquitoes, which tend to target the sensitive and thin skin of animals such as the tips of the ears

What you can do:
Protect your pets from fleas and ticks throughout the year by using a vet-recommended fleas and tick repellent. Treating your pooch or kitty for fleas regularly will prevent a recurring infestation. Pets that have developed flea allergy dermatitis scratch and bite excessively around the tail, groin and backside areas. Scabs and bumps may appear on the animal’s neck and back and they may experience hair loss.

In the PetAlive range, use natural remedies such as Allergy Itch Ease, AllergiClear Pets and Natural Itch Relief Spray to relieve itching and irritation. Allergy Itch Ease is a 100% homeopathic remedy to relieve itching and scratching in pets. AllergiClear Pets is a natural anti-histamine which protects against allergic reactions to flea saliva, grass, pollens fynbos and builds up resistance against airborne allergens. Natural Itch Relief Spray is a soothing spray which can be applied to the skin to effectively treat itchy skin areas. For flies and mosquitoes, use natural repellents to keep them away from your pets.
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3. Seasonal allergies

Does your pet sneeze or itch during the summer months? Pets are also prone to environmental allergies such as pollen, flowers, grass and mould. These allergens may either affect your animal’s respiratory tract or skin. If it affects your pet’s respiratory tract, look out for signs of sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, runny nose, congestion or difficulty breathing. If the skin is affected, an allergy dermatitis may develop and itching and scratching cycle will occur.

What you can do:
Keep your home as allergen-free as possible by vacuuming and cleaning pet bedding as often as possible and using natural household cleaners instead of chemical products. For pets that suffer from respiratory problems due to allergies, use our Respo-K. Respo-K reduces upper respiratory symptoms while strengthening the immune system and preventing secondary infection. 

To treat allergy dermatitis, try our AllergiClear Pets, a natural anti-histamine which protects the animal’s body against allergic reactions and builds up resistance against airborne allergens. Used together with Skin & Coat Tonic and Allergy Itch Ease to promote a healthy skin and coat and you will definitely be able to note improvement within weeks. Skin & Coat Tonic will heal and strengthen your pet’s damaged skin and restore it back to health. Allergy Itch Ease, a 100% homeopathic remedy for pets helps to soothe itchy skin and offer immediate relief. 
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4. Sunburn

Sun skincare is just as important to us humans as it is to our pets. White or light-coloured dogs and cats as well as those with naturally thin coats are especially prone to sunburn and skin cancers. Both dogs and cats love to sunbathe which increases their risk of sunburn. It also causes itching, peeling and discomfort of the skin.

What you can do:
Provide ample shade for your pets if they are outdoors as this will greatly reduce the risk of sun damage. Try to keep them indoors as much as you can and allow them outside for short periods before the sun comes up or after sunset. Like humans, pets can also have sunscreen for dogs and cats applied to the sensitive areas of their skin. Apply to your pet’s ears, nose, mouth area and back throughout the summer months.
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5. Burned paws and foot pads

Hot, tarred pavements, roads as well as paved patio areas can be torture for your precious pet’s paws and foot pads. Have you ever tried walking barefoot on a hot pavement? Imagine what it’s like for your pet! Their paws become burned, blistered and inflamed which causes them to limp or experience difficulty walking.

What you can do:
Be aware of hot surfaces and rather walk your dog in the morning or at night when it is cooler. You can also test the surface first by pressing your hand onto it before walking your pooch – if it feels hot to the touch, then it will definitely be too hot for your dog’s foot pads.
If your pet’s paws do become burnt from walking on a hot pavement, use our CothiVet and Hot Spot Relief Balm natural remedies. CothiVet naturally cleanses and disinfects minor wounds and skin irritations while Hot Spot Relief Balm soothes, heals and prevents further infection of affected areas.
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6. Fireworks

Holiday festivities and celebrations usually involve fireworks which is unfortunately terrifying and traumatic for our pets. The loud noises and flashing lights frighten pets and often results in them running away.

What you can do:
Keep your pets indoors if you know that fireworks will be set off. Leave the radio or TV turned on to dampen the jarring noises of fireworks. A natural remedy such as PetCalm will help to reduce anxiety and fear and keep your pet calm in stressful situations such as fireworks going off. A good few doses before and during fireworks begin will relax your pet in no time! 
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7. Getting lost

Summer parties can lead to open doors and gates which could be an invitation for dogs and cats to wander off. Traveling with your pet on holiday can also cause them to become lost in unfamiliar surroundings.

What you can do:
Make sure that your pet has a collar and leash with contact information or is micro chipped. If you are entertaining, keep all outdoor gates closed and make sure that your pets are in a safe, secure area.

When travelling with pets by car, keep dogs in crate and cats in a carrier for a safe and comfortable journey. Keep dogs on leash if you are visiting an unfamiliar area. It’s always best to send cats to a cattery or get a house sitter and not to take them with you holiday as they prefer familiar surroundings.
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