As the weather gets warmer, our pets will likely want to venture outdoors to frolic in the sun. Let your pet do so, by all means, but also consider these safety guidelines from your Richmond Hill veterinarian.

Hydration and Shade

Hydration and shade are the two most important factors for keeping your pet safe in hot summer weather. Provide plenty of cool, fresh water for your pet to drink, and make sure there are shady areas outdoors where your pet can cool off. Set up an awning or tent structure to make some shade, and check your pet regularly. Refill the water dish with cool water when it gets low.

Watch for Heatstroke

Panting, drooling, difficulty breathing, weakness, high heart rate, diarrhea, vomiting, and even seizures are all symptoms of heatstroke and overheating in pets. Let your pet come inside regularly to avoid these symptoms. If you do see the warning signs of heatstroke, move your pet to a cooler area, then call your Richmond Hill vet’s office to see how to proceed. Your veterinarian may want to examine your pet to make sure she’ll recover fully.

Keep Out of the Car

With the hot sun baking down on it, a parked car can quickly become an oven in the summer. Never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle, even for a few minutes. Opening the windows won’t help, and it even presents an escape option. Leave your pet at home or take her with you indoors.

Secure Windows

Many pets—especially cats—like to lounge by open or screened windows during the warm weather. Cats have a tendency to fall out of open or improperly-screened windows if they’re not careful, a term known as High-Rise Syndrome. Make sure all screens are secured, and don’t let your pet lay near an open window.

Beware of Asphalt

Black asphalt heats up quickly in the summer, and can easily burn and blister your pet’s paw pads. Since your pet’s body is so close to the ground, the asphalt can heat your pet up far more quickly. It’s best to avoid blacktop altogether when it’s very hot outside.