6 things that can hurt your dog in summer
The common trappings of summer —cookouts, hot, humid weather and fireworks—all pose a danger to dogs, says LizRozanski, DVM, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Keeping these in mind will help you keep your dog safe:
1. Shish kabobs and other foods-on-a-stick pose a special danger to dogs, who can ingest them and wind up with fragments which can cause blockages or gastrointestinal perforations, says Rozanski. Bones can also splinter inside a dog’s digestive tract. Keep pets clear of chicken wings and don’t give them bones from the meat you grill.
2. Toxic food. The garlic in your favorite marinade, the grapes and raisins in your fruit salad, or the chocolate in your brownies can all cause harm. Keep them out of your dog’s reach.
3. Overeating. A little food at the cookout is fun for dogs—let them enjoy the party. But “people” food adds up quickly, so have your guests, especially kids, check in with you before feeding Fido their scraps. Letting dogs overeat can cause vomiting or more serious problems.
4. Heat stroke and exhaustion are a special concern for canines. Make sure they have plenty of water. Put some ice cubes in it for a special treat, Rozanski says, and provide a shady spot to lie down. If your dog is panting excessively, shows signs of lethargy or has dry gums, call your veterinarian right away.
5. Never leave pets in the car. Any outside temperature above 65 degrees is especially worrisome, Dr. Rozanski says. Leave pets at home in a cool, safe place.
6. Many dogs are afraid of thunder and fireworks. Make sure your dog has a safe, quiet (ideally, soundproof) place to rest during thunderstorms and the rockets’ red glare.
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