HISTORIC TRIANGLE — Part beagle, part foxhound and all attitude, Ferris Bueller (no, not THAT Bueller but, definitely named after the ’80s icon) is a one-year-old pup who loves to head out on adventures and explore new places and meet people.
Ferris is on vacation this week but, wants to remind everyone about heat safety.
As we head into the Summer season, Ferris wants to remind everyone of some pet-friendly tips to keep your pup safe as the weather heats up.
When the temperature rises, avoid taking your pup out for a long, strenuous walk during the hottest part of the day. Try heading out during the morning or evening when and where shade is available.
Be mindful of surface temperature. Asphalt and sand can heat up quickly and burn paws. Check with your barehand before allowing your pet to head out on a walk…if it is too hot for you, it’s too hot for them according to the American Kennel Club.
Keep fresh water available. Cool, clean water will help beat dehydration and overheating. Insulated water bowls and a small kiddie pool would be welcomed by pups who prefer to hang out in the yard, like Ferris.
Ferris adores a ride in a car but, as summer warms up, he would never stay in a parked car, even for a few minutes! According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, “Dogs and cats cannot perspire and can only dispel heat by panting and through the pads of their feet. Pets left in hot cars even briefly can suffer from heat exhaustion, heat stroke, brain damage, and can even die. Even if you’ll be gone ‘just a minute,’ your pet will not be safe while you’re gone. Even being in an air-conditioned car with the motor off is not healthy for your pet.”
Know the signs of heatstroke and how to treat it, if necessary. The Humane Society of the United States states, “signs of heatstroke are heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever, dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, a deep red or purple tongue, seizure and unconsciousness”. If you see any of these symptoms, “move your pet into the shade or an air-conditioned area. Apply ice packs or cold towels to their head, neck and chest or run cool (not cold) water over them. Let them drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes. Take them directly to a veterinarian”.
Summer months also bring fleas and ticks. Be sure to check with your veterinarian about the best ways to handle these pests for your individual pet. The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) also has a guide for prevention and tips for handling them.
Ferris’ best advice? Educate yourself and use good common sense so the dog days of summer will not ruin any fun you and your canine buddy may have!
Happen to spot Ferris out on an adventure? Come say hello! If you have a dog-friendly suggestion you would like Ferris to consider covering or visiting, please email his mom. Hounds are not very good at responding.