Pet Safety
Weather doesn't just affect people-it affects pets, too! From comforting your dog during a thunderstorm to bringing your cat inside when it's very cold, it's important to protect your animal friend from the weather. Here are a few tips for keeping your pets healthy, happy and safe during every season.

Thunderstorms

Does your dog or cat run and hide during thunderstorms? If so, try these ideas to help keep your pet calm and comfortable when the weather gets rough.
  • When your dog stays calm during a storm, reward him/her with treats or lots of praise.
  • If your dog gets scared during thunderstorms, ask your parents or vet about using "system desensitization". This system helps your dog get used to thunder and lightning.
  • Don't reward your dog for acting scared or panicked during a storm.
  • Offer your dog a place to hide during storms, such as a padded pet crate or a special hiding spot under the bed.
Spring

Fresh flowers and May showers can make spring a very beautiful time of year. But even with everything in bloom, there are still things you should know to help protect your pet.
  • Spring allergies and hay fever cause animals to scratch, chew, and lick on themselves. If you see your pet doing these things, take your pet to the vet.
  • Don't let your pets eat grass on your lawn, especially if your grass is treated with bug killer or other chemicals.
Summer

While you enjoy your fun in the sun, try these ideas to keep your furry friend safe in the summer heat.
  • If your pet stays outside, make sure there is shelter with a cool, shaded area. Keep fresh water for your pet in this shady area.
  • Keep your pet out of the sun from 10:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon when the sun's rays are the most harmful. When you do go outside to play, put sunscreen on areas of your pet that are not protected by fur, such as the ears, the skin around the lips and the tip of the nose.
  • Don't leave your pets outside on long, hot days even if they're in the shade. Bring them inside to cool off.
  • Keep your pets groomed in the summer. They'll stay cooler on hot days if they have less fur.
  • Always keep a bowl full of fresh water out for your pet.
  • If you have a reptile, like a snake, frog or lizard, make sure you have a wide, shallow bowl of water that they can drink from and lay in. Be sure to clean the water bowl and give them fresh water frequently.
  • Never leave your pet unsupervised around a pool.
Winter

Winter can be a great time for snuggling up with your pet or building a snowman outside. Just remember that animals need to stay safe and warm just like you do when it gets cold.
  • Before the winter season, ask your parents to take your pet to the vet for a check-up.
  • Never leave your pets outside in freezing cold weather. When they go outside to play or potty, go with them. When you're cold and ready to go back inside, they're probably ready too! Take them back inside with you.
  • If your pet is older, be gentle when you're playing with him/her in the winter. Older animals can get stiff, sore joints when it's cold.
  • In the winter, cats like to snuggle up against warm objects. Make sure your kitties don't try to curl up in a car engine or another dangerous, hot surface where they could hurt themselves.
Make sure pets have plenty of unfrozen fresh water to drink.



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