Summer is finally here! From pool parties and backyard barbecues to camping trips and exploring new trails, it’s a great time for the whole family to enjoy the outdoors–and that includes our furry family members! As we begin to prepare for the hotter months with sunscreen and bug spray, there are a number of ways to make sure our pets stay safe this summer.

Keep it cool! Avoid walks during the warmest time of the day–typically between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Be aware of signs of heat exhaustion like heavy breathing, panting, thick drool or shaky legs. And remember, if it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet!

Never leave pets unattended in the car! Even when the windows are cracked or you parked in the shade, the temperature inside of a car can rise by 19°F in as little as seven minutes!

Resist the urge to share food. We know they like to beg and give you irresistibly cute looks, but don’t share food with your pet! Scraps and leftovers from the grill can be rich and fatty, causing gastrointestinal discomfort.

Danger lurks in the garden! Be careful with garden hazards like toxic plants, such as azaleas and lilies, and harmful chemicals like fertilizers and insect repellents.

Take precautions with water activities. Though they might seem like a good way to stay cool, always be on the lookout when your dog is swimming in natural bodies of water. Beware of currents, riptides, and sinkholes. And have your dog wear a brightly colored life vest to help them stay afloat.

Carefully guard the fireworks! Firework’s colorful packaging can be enticing to pets, so make sure to keep them out of their reach to avoid any contact with dangerous chemicals. And don’t forget to clear away any debris after your display.

If you suspect that your pet is having a medical emergency, please contact us right away.