Is your dog spring-ready?

Spring is here and although we’re all looking forward to the warmer weather, it is important to remember that seasonal change can contribute to creating a risky environment for your dog.

As temperatures rise, we open our doors and windows and spend more time outside with friends, family and our pets. As a responsible pet owner, there are a few simple steps you can take to keep your dog healthy and happy.

It’s important to wash your dog and its bed regularly, as well as treat your dog for ticks and fleas as these parasites love warmer weather. Now is also a good time to replace those well-chewed toys, grubby collars and leads. If there’s a new puppy in the house, it’s important to ensure your pets’ vaccinations are up to date.

If your dog gets itchy during Spring, Summer or Autumn, it is likely a reaction to seasonal allergens. Unlike humans, dog allergies are more likely to manifest as skin irritation. To help your dog with seasonal allergies, you’ll need to reduce exposure to allergens with frequent baths and foot soaks. In addition, keep the areas where your pet spends most of its time as allergen-free as possible by vacuuming/cleaning floors and washing their bedding frequently.Dry skin is often accompanied by flaky skin (dandruff) and a dull coat as it lacks the proper balance of moisture and natural oils to remain soft, strong, flexible and healthy. In colder weather, the lack of humidity and the frequent temperature changes, will wreak havoc on your dogs’ skin. To overcome this, brush your dog regularly as this will encourage the shedding of any flaky skin and it will also stimulate the production of your dogs’ natural oils, helping distribute it throughout their coat.Soon after Spring comes Summer and to prevent your dog from overheating and dehydrating during the long, hot, sunny days it’s important to give them plenty of fresh, clean water. Make sure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun, and keep them indoors when it’s extremely hot. Never leave your pets alone in a parked vehicle as it can lead to fatal heat stroke. Don’t over-exercise them, consider early morning or evening walks and watch out for hot pavements as heat rises from the ground. Your dog absorbs and releases heat through their feet and walking on hot pavement can be dangerous for your dog.With the weather warming up, your pet will be eager to get outside and start exploring. And while there is nothing wrong with letting your pet roam, your pet is part of your family and deserves to be cared for and protected. So, remember these general pet safety tips and your dog will breeze through spring and summer without a hitch.

About the Author: Matt Cooper

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