Spring Pet Safety Tips

It looks like spring is finally here to stay and with it comes all the things that we like to do once the weather gets warmer…..spring cleaning, gardening, home improvement, lawn care, and just being outside and enjoying the longer days and beautiful weather.  However, there are some dangers that could cause serious problems for you furry friends.  Here are some things to think about to keep your pets safe and happy.

  • Spring Cleaning-Be sure to keep all cleaning products out of your pet’s reach.  Even the ones that are labeled “all natural” could pose a safety hazard.
  • Mosquitoes, Fleas and Ticks-OH MY!!!– It’s that time of year!  If you have not started using some type of prevention, then now is the time.  (Flea infestations can happen quickly with one female flea able to lay 40 to 50 eggs daily!)  Fleas and ticks can also cause other health problems for your pet.   Your pet should be on YEAR ROUND heartworm prevention.  Heartworms are spread by infected mosquitoes and with our mild winters, they do not ever go away.  Talk to your veterinarian about what products are best suited for your furry family member.
  • Allergies-Just like their humans, dogs and cats can have seasonal allergies.  Allergic reactions can cause itchy skin, red eyes, sneezing and ear irritations.  Some animals can have a life-threatening anaphylactic shock to insect bites and stings.  If you think that your pet is experiencing problems with allergies, make an appointment with your veterinarian.
  • Open Windows-As you open your windows to let in those cool breezes, check to make sure that screens are secure.  Some pets have been known to jump or escape through a loose screen or unscreened window and have become lost or injured.
  • Secure Spot!-While most dogs love to feel the wind on their faces, allowing them to ride in the beds of pick-up trucks or stick their heads out of moving-car windows is dangerous. Insects and flying debris can cause inner ear or eye injuries and lung infections, and abrupt stops or turns can cause major injury, or worse! Some pets have been known to jump out of open windows or truck beds.  Pets riding in cars should always be secured in a crate or wearing a seatbelt harness designed especially for them.
  • Time for Home Improvement-Products such as paints, mineral spirits and solvents can be toxic to your pets and cause severe irritation or chemical burns. Carefully read all labels to see if the product is safe to use around your furry friends. Also, be cautious of physical hazards, including nails, staples, insulation, blades and power tools. It may be wise to confine your dog or cat to a designated pet-friendly room during home improvement projects.
  • Lawn and Garden Care-Fertilizers, insecticides and herbicides keep our plants and lawns healthy and green, but their ingredients may be dangerous if your pet ingests them.  Read labels carefully and store these products safely.  Visit the Pet Poison Helpline for a list of spring bulbs and flowers that can be harmful to your furry friends.  http://www.petpoisonhelpline.com/pet-owners/seasons/spring/
  • ID Your Pets-Warmer weather means more time outside-walks in the park, traveling, picnics…This means more opportunities for your pet to become lost.  Be sure that your pet is wearing a collar with proper identification.  Microchipping your pet is one of the best precautions that you can take to ensure that Rover or Fluffy will be safely returned  if they wander off.

(Information for this article provided by VetStreet, ASPCA, Pet Poison Hotline, and wwww.mypet.com)