Ah, Summer! It’s the perfect time of year to get out and enjoy the sun and great weather. No matter where you live, there’s so much stuff to fill your summer days with fun, and if you plan to include your dog in the action, you’ll want to keep reading.
There are so many summertime activities that your dog can accompany you on, including picnics, fairs and festivals, and outdoor concerts. Of course, you’ll want to everything you can to keep your mutt safe and happy when you’re out and about, and that’s why I’m partnering with my friends at Petplan to share 13 tips for summer pet safety.
13 Tips for Summer Pet Safety
1. Be prepared – Make sure you’ve got everything you need before you leave the house. Don’t leave home without your dog’s on-the-go essentials!
2. Parked cars – Even on mild days your can get hot in a hurry, which can turn deadly in as little as 10 minutes. Never, ever leave your dog in the car, even with the windows cracked. Just don’t do it, it’s not worth the risk.
3. Sunshine – When temperatures are peaking, take frequent breaks in the shade. It’s also a good idea to bring along a spray bottle so you can deliver a cooling spritz whenever your dog needs it. You might enjoy it, too!
4. Beer tent – Nothing refreshes a dog mom like a cold beer on a hot day (please drink responsibly!), but never, ever share your brew with your mutt. Alcohol is toxic to pets, even in seemingly small amounts.
5. Food truck – Chicken wings, Mexican street corn, and funnel cake, oh my! These may be staple fare at summer events, but they don’t belong on your dog’s plate. Bones, cobs, and greasy fats can cause intestinal blockages and pancreatitis. Pack fresh veggies for a healthy treat.
6. One man’s trash is a dog’s treasure – Fairgrounds are a smorgasbord of dropped food and wrappers, so you must think one step ahead of your pet! To prevent accidental snacking, use a Gentle Leader to control roving noses.
7. Other dogs – It’s always fun to make new friends, but remember that dogs can easily become overstimulated in a chaotic environment. Keep meetings with other animals brief, and if you see either pet stiffen, growl, or give a hard stare or side eye, end the interaction and take a time out.
8. Children – The youngest among us can be unpredictable, loud, and unaware of how to properly approach a dog. Small children who are running around can activate a dog’s instinct to chase. Give your pup plenty of space so he doesn’t perceive them as a threat.
9. Fireworks – A summertime favorite, but many dogs do not enjoy them. Avoid events with explosives if your pup suffers from noise phobias (if he doesn’t like thunderstorms, that’s a good clue). If you do take your pet to a festival with fireworks, hold on tight to his leash; a startled dog may try to bolt from the blast, and you don’t want to lose your dog in the crowd!
10. Music – Keep an eye on your dog when your favorite band takes the stage and remove him to a quiet area if you notice any signs of discomfort. If your pup is trembling, barking, cowering, or trying to bolt, he may not be ready to rock and roll.
11. Campfires – A crackling campfire just feels like summer, but it can tempt curious noses and cause accidental burns. Keep furry friends a safe distance from the flames. If you’re making s’mores, be sure chocolate, wrappers, and roasting sticks don’t fall into the wrong paws.
12. Puddles – If a “rain or shine” event turns soupy and soggy, be sure to keep your dog from drinking from puddles. Leptospirosis and giardia lurk in standing water and can cause nasty illnesses that will definitely rain on your parade.
13. Crowds – Unfortunately, there may be times when furry festival goers behave better than two-legged guests. Stay away from rowdy crowds and avoid letting intoxicated people hound your dog.
Whether you’re sun worshipping or stargazing, summer fairs and festivals are fun for the entire family. With your best friend in tow, there’s more to prepare for, but with a little planning it’s easy to put safety first. Thanks again to Petplan for sharing these helpful tips!
What’s your best summer safety tip for pets?
Feel free to share with us in a comment below, or stop by our Facebook page to join in the conversation there!