Memorial Day weekend is traditionally the kickoff for summer activities. The kids are out of school, and summer vacations begin. Many people like to include their pets on their summer outings. It’s important to be mindful of these dangers in Oklahoma and follow these summer safety tips during your summer travels.
Oklahoma summer dangers:
Heat stroke: Here in Oklahoma, heat stroke is a major concern for outside pets. Those more susceptible to heat stroke include:
- Short-nosed breeds
- Overweight animals
- Pets with heart or respiratory problems
Signs of heat stroke include:
- Excessive panting
- Excessive salivation
- High fever
- Rapid heartbeat
By following these summer safety tips, you can help prevent heat stroke by providing shade, plenty of clean water, avoid excessive exercise, and NEVER leave your pet in a parked vehicle. If your pet is exhibiting signs of heat stroke immediately immerse it in cool water and take your pet to a veterinarian immediately.
Insects and snakes: Fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes are common during warmer weather, and all these insects in Oklahoma transmit some nasty diseases. Make sure to keep your pets on flea and tick prevention as well as heartworm prevention. In Oklahoma, we also must worry about venomous insects and snakes. If your dog is bitten by a venomous snake, you should seek veterinary care immediately. A snake vaccine is available, which helps reduce symptoms from rattlesnakes and copperheads. If your pet is having an allergic reaction to an insect bite, (swollen face or hives) you can give 25mg of Benadryl for every 25 pounds of body weight.
Summer safety tips when traveling with your pet:
- Call ahead to make sure that your pet is welcome.
- Make sure your pet is fully vaccinated
- Take your pet’s medical records with you in case of an emergency.
- If you are traveling out of state, you will also need a health certificate.
- Take your pet’s food and a supply of water.
- Be sure your pet has a collar with identification tags or a microchip just in case your pet escapes.
- NEVER let your pet ride with his head out the window or in the back of a truck. Confinement in a carrier is always the safest.