Caring for our best friends

Published 9:13 pm Friday, June 12, 2009

As the dog days of summer approach, how will you ensure your dog doesn’t overheat?

Michelle Clayton, a veterinary assistant at Forrest Veterinary Clinic, offered some tips on how to keep pets cool.

“Keep them in plenty of shade,” Clayton said.

Hydration is also an important part of summer pet care.

“Make sure you have a large enough bowl where they have plenty of water during the day if you’re not going to be there,” Clayton said.

Water can be used in other ways to ease the heat. Clayton said some pet owners, whose pets enjoy getting wet, will buy small plastic swimming pools for their pets to romp around in.

Another way to make sure pets don’t overheat is to have them groomed.

“We run across a lot of people with animals like golden retrievers with a lot of fur, who get them groomed or shaved,” Clayton said.

To provide additional relief for your pet, Clayton suggested bringing them inside during the hottest part of the day, especially if you have a basement or a garage.

Clayton said the size of the animal does not affect its susceptibility to overheating, but the larger animals tend to be kept outside more often.

But heat is not the only concern as we move into the summer.

According to Clayton, fleas and ticks are worse in the summer months.

“Make sure you’re using something good for fleas and ticks,” Clayton said.