Pets & The Threats Of Summer

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Taking extra care of the family pet during the hot months of summer plays a very important role in keeping them healthy. Dogs that have thin hair or short fur and if they spend any amount of time outdoors during the summer, it is a good idea to apply sun block lotion which is made especially for them to prevent sunburn. Insects pose more of a threat to dogs and cats then they do for people. Adults and kids need access to plenty of water to beat all of those long, hot days of summer, our pets do too. During the summertime, staying cool is what it’s all about for both people & our family pets.


Animals that have thinner fur coats are at a much higher risk of sunburn, but even dogs with thick fur can suffer from sunburn in some manner. All pets are susceptible to burning on the tips of their ears and their noses. Another susceptible place for sunburn to occur on an animal is their abdomen. Most dogs and cats love to lie on their backs letting their and catch some rays. Sunscreen lotions can be found either on-line or at a pet supply store which is especially formulated for use on dogs and cats. If you are not sure about what particular product to use on your pet talk to you local veterinarian first.

Fleas & Ticks

Along with the heat of the summertime is those pesky fleas and ticks which can lead your pet to start constant scratching and itching himself. If your pet is allergic to fleas & ticks, the constant scratching & itching can lead to patchy hair loss which can be noticed on your pet’s body.

Wasps & Bees

For some strange reason, dogs and cats love to play with those buzzing little flying critters but this can lead to bad stings on your pet’s nose and head. If your pet is allergic to insect bites and or bee stings, it can be fatal so it is very important to take your pet to your local vet immediately if they are stung by a bee or any other flying insect so that they can provide the proper medical attention your pet needs.

Fire Ants  

Another potentially fatal situation for your dog or cat in the summertime involves fire ants. A sleeping dog or cat can be easy prey for these red pests. These ants will actually scatter themselves over your pet’s stomach and synchronize their patterns of stinging. This can cause severe pain. If this is occurs, hose down your pet and bring it to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Prevention measures should solve most problems, but be sure to keep your eyes open just in case.

Swimming Pools

Most dogs love the water and even some cats do too. Even though the family pet may love being in the water they could fall in by accident and will have trouble climbing back out. Your dog or cat may become frightened if they fall into the water and this will make it much more difficult for them to be able to get themselves back out.

If the family pet does like to beat the summertime heat in the water, you can place a kiddie size plastic pool for the family pet to use and keep access to the family swimming pool off limits.


 During the long hot sizzling days of summer, you will notice that your pet will consume substantially bigger amounts of water which is normal. Dehydration can happen to animals just as easily as it does with humans. Keep fresh cool water available at all times for your pets. You can place a few ice cubes in your pet’s water when the temperature hits in the 90’s & above. Just don’t over do the ice cubes because if the water becomes too cold then this will likely end up causing your pet to start vomiting up bile and if your pet is already dehydrated the excessive cold water will only makes things worse.

Pets and Parked Cars

During my years working for a veterinarian I can recall only a few times when a cat was brought in suffering from heat exhaustion but more often there were many times where pet owners brought in their dog. A lot of the times the cause of the heat exhaustion was from the owner leaving the animal inside of their car while they went into the store just for a few minutes.

 Leaving an animal inside of the car is most often the cause of heat exhaustion in pets. Never leave your dog or cat inside of a car not even for a few minutes. Even with the windows rolled down the temperature inside of a car will rise to unbelievable degrees. It only takes five minutes for an animal to die inside of a car on a sweltering summer day. Automobiles act like a greenhouse and the heat is trapped inside of them and even on a day when the outdoor temperature is in the low 70’s the temperature inside of a car can soar up to 102 in only ten minutes and then a sweltering 120 degrees within 30 minutes time. This is with the windows down and the car is in the shade.

 When pet owners take the time to ensure that the family pets have the proper care to keep cool during those lazy days of summer then everyone can relax and have a lot more less stressful summer. Take some time to prepare the family pet for the summer sun, and everyone can enjoy a fun, safe and happy summer together.


I learned a lot of valuable & useful information during my ten years working as a veterinary technician.


I am not a licensed vet but I did learn many useful tips and information during my years working for one. The above information is intended for educational purposes only and shall not take the place of seeking professional medical advice from a licensed veterinarian.


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