After a long winter, the warmer weather of springtime and early summer means long walks in the park, backyard barbecues, and afternoons spent at the beach. American Kennel Club has put together a few helpful reminders to keep your pups healthy and happy during the warmer weather.
When a pet is infected with this disease, which is spread by mosquitos and prevalent throughout the United States, the worms can cause damage to arteries and the lungs. Common signs are coughing, lethargy, and di culty breathing. The condition is treatable, but treatment is expensive and typically requires hospitalization. It’s important to keep your pet on a monthly preventive medication and to get him tested for heartworm once a year, even if he is an indoor-only pet.
Flea & Tick Prevention Fleas
There are more than 200 species of eas in the United States, but the most common variety to a ect dogs is, ironically, the cat ea. These wingless insects feed o your pet and use his comfy coat as a nesting ground. Applying a monthly medication to your pet’s skin will destroy eas and their eggs. Also, vacuuming frequently will eliminate most eas from the home (change the bag often), and washing your dog’s bedding weekly will also help to prevent infestation.
These parasites pose a greater risk than eas because they can transmit serious illnesses, like Lyme disease. Monthly topical medications can help protect your pet against ticks, and your veterinarian may recommend a Lyme disease vaccine. Be sure to check your pet’s coat for ticks after he’s been in a wooded, grassy, or beach area. If you see a tick, remove it with tweezers. (Note: do not try to burn the tick—this method rarely works and is dangerous to your pet.)
Warm weather means more outdoor playtime for you and your pet. Here are some tips to stay safe while enjoying the sunshine.
Always use a leash: Your dog may be perfectly behaved most of the time, but should a squirrel or rabbit run by, his natural instincts to chase may lead him into a dangerous situation. Also, keeping a leash on your dog allows you to protect him from other dogs or hazards.
Take caution in water: Never let your pet swim unsupervised, and limit the amount of time he spends in the water, especially if it’s deep. After a dip in a lake, pool, or ocean, hose him down to rinse the dirt, chemicals, or saltwater o his coat. And never allow your pet to drink from a pond or lake - it can make him sick.
Spring-clean the coat: Springtime is a heavy shedding period as dogs lose their winter coats. Brush regularly to remove dead hair and dandru , and bathe your pet frequently to help keep his coat shiny and fresh.