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May 31, 2011

I am SOOO woofin’ happy!…

my caretaker wants to go out (almost) as much as I do these days! In honor of our committment to keep our dogs healthy and safe, here are some summer tips from the AKC:

Heat Hazards

** If your dog is outside on a hot day, make sure he has a shady spot to rest in. You many want to fill a child’s wading pool with fresh water for your dog to cool off in.

** Never leave your dog in a closed vehicle on a hot day. The temperature inside a car can rise to over 100 degrees in a matter of minutes.

** Always provide plenty of cool, fresh water.

** Avoid strenuous exercise on extremely hot days. Take walks in the early mornings or evenings when the sun’s heat is less intense.

** Try to avoid prolonged exposure to hot asphalt or sand which can burn your dog’s paws.

** Dogs that are brachycephalic (short faced) such as bulldogs, boxers, japanese chins (yea, Teddy) and pekinese have an especially hard time in the heat because they can’t pant efficiently. Keep your brachycephalic dog inside with air conditioning.

GENERAL HEALTH

** Make sure your dog’s vaccinations are up to date because dog’s generally come into contact with other animals more during the summer months.

** Keep dogs off lawns that have been chemically treated or fertilized for 24 hours and away from toxic plants and flowers.

** Fleas and ticks and the mosquitos which carry heartworm disease are more prevalent in warmer months. Use a topical treatment and make sure you carefully check out your dog after being on grass or in the woods.

BEACH TIPS

** Make sure your dog has a shady spot to rest in and plenty of fresh water.

** Dogs, especially those with short hair, white fur and pink skin can sunburn. Limit your dog’s exposure during the day and apply sunblock to his ears and nose 30 minutes before going outside.

** Check with a lifeguard for daily water conditions. Dogs are easy targets for sea lice and jellyfish.

** Running on the sand is strenuous. A dog that is out of shape can easily pull a tendon or ligament, so keep a check on your dog’s activity.

** Do not let your dog drink seawater; the salt will make him sick.

** Salt and other minerals in ocean water can damage your dog’s coat, so rinse him off at the end of the day.

WATER SAFETY

** Most dogs enjoy swimming, but some cannot swim, and others may hate the water. Be concious of your dog’s preferences and skills before trying to make him swim.

** If you are swimming for the first time with your dog, start in shallow water and coax him in by calling his name. Encourage him with toys or treats. Or let him follow another experienced dog he is friendly with.

** Never throw your dog into the water.

** If your dog begins to paddle with his front legs, lift his hind legs and help him float. He should quickly catch on and keep his back end up.

** Don’t let your dog overdo it: swimming is hard work and he may tire quckly.

** If you have your own pool, make sure your dog knows where the stairs or ladder are located. Be sure that pool covers are firmly in place; dogs have been know to slip in under openings and drown.

** Never leave your dog unattended in water.

Thanks for checking in with us! We listened to Ernestine who suggests we ‘go with the flow’ and not stick to any format if there are things to say that will be good for her… oops she is double thinking that, maybe she would like to stay out all day running on the beach and swimming ’til she drops! Guess that’s why we are here!

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