Me: “Bentley! Pierre! Y’all come here. It’s time to remind everyone of some important summer pet safety tips.”
Bentley: “We prefer the term ‘furry family member’ safety tips and we are ready to roll.”
Pierre: “I always like to start off with a stern warning about toxic waste. Avoid it at all cost. That is some nasty stuff.”
Me: “I’ll admit that toxic waste is a danger but I was thinking more of household or everyday dangers.”
Pierre: “Fine, but don’t let it be said that I didn’t warn you.”
Bentley: “Good grief, Pierre! Mom said HOUSEHOLD dangers. Obviously, the number one household danger is scissors. People run with them. People trip over us. Double dog danger is what you have right there. Just say no to scissors.”
Me: “How can I open the deliveries that you get if I don’t use scissors? Anyway, that is not exactly what I am talking about either. Let’s see if we can’t think of some other helpful safety ideas.
Pierre: “I like to check out the garden for plants that are potentially harmful. We posted a list of some common plants that can cause trouble."
Bentley: “Always keep a close eye on your pet around water because not all dogs are natural born swimmers. If your dog isn’t used to water, invest in a swimming vest before inviting them for a swim in the lake or pool. P.S. It’s not nice to laugh at your pup when they are wearing their life vest.
Me: This is a big one for me and that’s to make sure that your pet has proper identification with collars, tags, and a microchip. I prefer all three on the boys. Collars can come off and tags go with them so microchipping is crucial.
Pierre: “I’d rather not even think about snakes but the fact is snake bites increase during the summer months. While it is difficult to keep them out of our yards, there are things that you can do to discourage them. Besides barking at them like a maniac, you can have fences that are set a foot or two into the ground, mow close around your house, store firewood away from your home, remove junk piles, clear out weeds and brush, and empty standing water. If your dog is bitten by a snake, seek immediate medical attention.
Bentley: “Summer is hot! Whenever your dog is outdoors, make sure they have a shady spot to retreat. Excessive heat can lead to a heat stroke, so know the warning signs.
· Excessive panting or difficulty breathing
· Increased heart and respiratory rate
· Mild weakness, stupor, or a sudden collapse demands a quick response.
If your pet displays any of these symptoms, they need to be cooled by dipping them in a tub of cool water for up to two minutes. Place the wet dog in front of a fan. Cool packs can be applied to the groin area and wipe their paws with cool water. There are also cooling collars, cooling mats and other cooling pet products available. Pssst...that’s a hint, Mom!”
Me: “You ask to go lay in the sun then spend your day in the air conditioning, but I’ll see what I can find to help you on our walks. Thanks for helping me with these serious safety tips. I’m sure our readers will appreciate them.”
Bentley: “I hope they remember about the scissors!”
Pierre: “And the toxic waste!”