That was a long, chilly spring. While many of us have been counting down the days until 30-degree weather, pets may not share the same enthusiasm. The hot weather can bring discomfort to our four-legged friends. We know keeping a dog chained up outdoors in the heat is cruel, as is leaving him locked in a car, but there are other things to consider for your pet's summertime comfort.
. Cool down. Have a source of water for pets to use to cool down. This may be a retired baby pool or a misting hose.
. Offer shade.
. Provide plenty of fresh, cool water to drink.
. Watch for hot feet. Although the pads of dogs' feet are thicker than human skin, they can still burn. Check for redness and if your pet is limping, it's time to cut the walk short.
. Prickly foes. Cats and dogs may inhale barbed seeds or have them lodge in their paws and coats. If a pet seems uncomfortable after being outdoors, burrs could be the culprit. Seek assistance from a veterinarian.
. Keep it cool. Keep a ventilation source available even when you're out, such as an open window, ceiling fan or leave the A/C set to low.
. Leave water out. An indoor water bowl is a necessity.
. Walk dogs early in the morning and in the evening when the weather is cooler.
. If you'll be taking a dog along on a hike during warm weather, be sure to pack enough water for both of you.
. Dogs may not be allowed on beaches during the summer season. Check ahead before planning a seaside adventure.
. Warm weather helps parasites multiply. Don't keep food left out or it may attract bugs and become spoiled.
For more summertime health tips for a pet, consult with a veterinarian or visit www.vetinfo.com.