May 22, 2012
Tips for Keeping Your Pets Safe This Summer
Memorial Day weekend signals the unofficial start of summer, and The Humane Society of the United States reminds everyone to think carefully about how the warm weather may impact their pets. Summer is the perfect time to enjoy the great outdoors with your pets. With AccuWeather predicting that many parts of the country will see warmer than average weather this summer, it’s all the more important to take just a few extra precautions whether taking a walk, going for a drive or just enjoying the backyard so you and your four-legged family members can have a happy and safe sun-filled season.
Safer Summer Outings
- While Fido may leap at the opportunity for a joy ride, leaving a pet alone in a parked car during warm weather can be deadly. On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85 degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car, even with the windows cracked open, can reach 102 degrees within just 10 minutes, and after 30 minutes the temperature will reach 120 degrees. Even when the temperature outside is a balmy 72 degrees, the temperature inside your car can rocket to a fatal 116 degrees in less than an hour’s time.
- Your four-legged friend needs exercise too! However, exercising in the summer heat can be just as uncomfortable for your dog as it is for you. Take your walks in the early mornings or late evening, not in the heat of midday, and remember that hot pavement can burn the pads of your dog's paws.
- Keep your dog secure safely inside moving cars whenever you travel. Letting your dog travel with his or her head outside the open car window is dangerous—flying particles and debris can cause eye damage, and some pets have actually fallen out of moving vehicles. And dogs should never ride unsecured in the back of pickup trucks, regardless of how fast you are moving.
Beware of Loud Noises
- Many pets startle at the sounds of common summer noises like fireworks and thunder. For many shelters, the day after a town fireworks display is one of the busiest days of the year, as family pets become lost fleeing the sounds. Before a storm or fireworks display, bring your pet indoors or put him/her on a leash or secure tether.
- Heartworms, ticks and fleas are more of a problem in warmer months and can cause serious health problems. Contact your veterinarian about products that will keep your pet healthy and parasite free.
- Keep your feline friends safe and content indoors by providing them with cat grass, window perches, and other tools that bring the great outdoors inside. Or consider screening in a porch or outdoor patio where you can allow your kitty some safe outdoor time. Also, many cats can be easily trained to walk on a harness (never just use a collar and leash), allowing you both to enjoy a little more leisure time in the yard.
- Avoid using cocoa mulch, pesticides, fertilizers and other gardening products that can pose hazards to pets, and encourage your neighbors to do the same.
- Summertime can also bring major weather events like hurricanes and tornados. Remember, never leave your pets behind – if conditions aren’t safe for you, they are not safe for your pets. Visit humanesociety.org/disaster for tips on disaster preparedness.
For more pet health and safety tips visit humanesociety.org/pets. And to purchase products to help keep pets cool, calm, and safe during the hot summer months, visit Humane Domain’s Hot Summertime Favorites Collection.
Media Contact: Raúl Arce-Contreras, email@example.com, 301-721-6440.