Whether you have dogs or cats, your furry friends are part of the family. To keep them safe, healthy and happy, you need to know where potential hazards exist. Here’s how you can take the proper precautions to ensure your pets are safe year-round.
Leave Your Pet Indoors
First, leave your pet indoors when you go out. It doesn’t matter whether you expect to be gone for an hour or all day, left to their own devices, pets can get themselves in trouble. Interactive toys will help keep their minds occupied, but don’t hesitate to crate your dog or cat as needed. You can also confine your pet in a pen or gate them into a safe room.
Ideally, the windows should be closed or covered with screens. Pets can fall out of unscreened windows, and even screened ones provide little protection. Windows screens, especially adjustable ones, can pop out with enough pressure, putting your dog or cat at risk
Remember the Right Temperature
In the summer months, heat exhaustion and dehydration are very real threats, says the ASPCA. Keep pets safe and cool by setting the right temperature in your house. Some pets, such as those with flat faces (e.g., English bulldogs, Persian cats), cannot pant very well, so cooling down naturally is a challenge. Older pets and those that are overweight also have a similar issue. You can turn your air conditioner down, but you should never turn it off while you are out of the house. It could get too hot for your dog or cat.
In the winter months, you could turn the heat down, but remember to keep your pets’ cold tolerance and physical limits in mind. A good rule of thumb is that if it is too cold for you, it is too cold for them.
Protect Them From Bugs
If you have pets, you need to make sure that you protect your dogs or cats from bugs. Ticks and fleas plague furry animals and they can cause serious health complications. Keeping the grass on your lawn cut short will help, but you may want to use some type of chemical protection. Talk to your vet about what is best for your pet.
Know What Is Toxic
Don’t think you can spray an insecticide on the lawn and your pet will be safe from bugs. It doesn’t work that way. The wrong lawn chemicals can irritate paws, but you should also make an effort to understand other items that could be toxic to your pets. Antifreeze puddles on the ground can be a problem, as can sunscreen. Certain plants, such as rhododendrons and azaleas, can cause problems too.
Keep an Eye on Your Furry Friend
Finally, consider keeping an eye on your pets from wherever you are with a home security camera system. If you have a doggie door, an outdoor camera is essential to make sure your dog or cat don’t hurt themselves out there and that they are able to get back inside. However, you may want to have a camera inside the house too so you can check in on your furry friend from time to time.
Keeping Your Pets Safe All Year Long
Keep your pets safe all year long by understanding the threats they face. Leave your pet secured indoors whenever you leave and crate or confine them as necessary for their own safety. Also, secure the windows and keep the temperature in your home set to a comfortable level. Take steps to protect your furry friends from bugs as well as toxic materials. If you leave your pet alone often or for a longer period of time, consider adding a camera in your home so you can make sure your dog or cat is safe.