July 2011 Pet Health News

July 2011 Pet Health News                                                                                   Can't Read This? Go Here
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Hello again,

With summer finally here, a lot of pets will be spending most of their days in the sun but it's important that pets will be protected from the powerful sun. Keep your pets hydrated and enjoy the summer!

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Protecting Pets From the Heat

sick puppy

It's easy for us to take off our coats, drink cold water, and put on mosquito repellent to keep us satisfied in the summer however, this is a whole different story for our pets. Our pets require our help in the summer to avoid heat stroke, being infested, or becoming sick. Here are a few quick steps to take to keep your pet happy in the summer.

Cut it off – In the summer, we dress in shorts and a loose shirt to keep us cool. Our pets do not have that option so it's up to you to keep them cool. When the weather begins to show signs of summer in the spring it's time to clip your pet's fur. Dogs create their own heat so they do not need all of their fur keeping them extra warm in the summer. Shave your pet down as much as you can! Also, it is not the best idea to keep your pet in the house when it is extremely air conditioned. Your pet may not be able to handle going from extremely hot to cold conditions.

Hydration – During the summer heat, always make sure your pet has a fresh bowl of water. Your pet knows when the water is getting old so when there is fresh water your pet will be happy! If your pet is dehydrated, the effects can lead to serious health problems. Your pet may be dehydrated if there is a change in appetite or fatigue. When going for those long summer walks, make sure to take a bottle of water for you and your pet.

Little Critters – You never know what little critters are hiding in the grass that your pet goes running through. Summer is the season of fleas and ticks so it is best to get a flea collar or tick repellant. It is important to try to find the best flea and tick control suitable for your pet. Whenever your pets come from the outdoors, check them thoroughly for ticks. If you happen to find something out of the ordinary, take your pet to the veterinarian right away. If it is a tick, it is best to get it removed by a vet to ensure it is properly removed.

Shade – Keeping pets outside for a minimum amount of time is crucial for their health. Pets can suffer from heatstroke quite easily. Signs of heatstroke are whining, sluggish behavior, irregular panting, difficulty breathing, and other odd activities. If you think your pet is suffering from heat stroke, place them in a cool bath, but not freezing cold water that it would shock them but enough for their bodies to cool down. Take your pet to the veterinarian immediately if you think they are suffering heat stroke.

Getting To Know Your Pup's Weird Behavior

cute puppies

Chances are that you sometimes think your dog is strange. The things they do might get you wondering why they do the things they do. Could it be a health problem or is it just for fun? Our canine friends have strange behavior so what does it all mean? Here are just a few of the strange things you might see your dog doing.

Why Do Dog's Eat Grass?
When your dog is outside, you may be constantly watching them eat grass and wondering why they do it. Some dogs may eat grass all the time while other dogs are rarely seen eating it. Dogs that frequently eat grass may suffer a gastrointestinal problem and should be taken to the vet. Dogs may also eat grass to cure an upset stomach. Grass stimulates vomiting to make the dog feel better. Moreover, dogs may be eating grass to fulfill their diet. As we need vegetables, dogs may need some green food thus eating grass. Dog could also be low on minerals or vitamins so to create balance in their diet they eat grass. It is not completely understood why dogs eat grass which is why unless your dog is constantly eating grass, you should not worry too much.

Why Do Dogs Lick?
Dogs have many reasons to lick, whether it's the floor, themselves, or you. Dog's have an instinct to clean. If there is something on the counter, stuck to their fur, or something on your hands, they will lick to clean it. They clean you like they protect you! It is also an impulse to lick you to show affection. When your canine was a pup, their mother may have licked them. Thus to show a sign of fondness they may lick you. Even if you are sad your dog may lick you to try to get a smile on your face. However, if your dog is licking their paws, they may be: in pain from something that is stuck in their paw and by licking their paw, it acts as a pain treatment for dogs; suffering dog separation anxiety; or treating allergies for themselves; or they may just be bored!

Why Do Dogs Hide Their Food?
It is a natural behavior for dog's to hide their food. In the earlier years, dogs did not know if they were going to get a meal the next day so they would bury their food in the dirt to save it for a later time. Storing their food underground would ensure that they could keep their food fresh and hopefully away from bugs. It became a great solution to save their food since they did not know what would happen in the future. Your canine friend may also hide their food because they do not feel it is safe. Your pet may be feeling intimidated by another animal in the house so they save the food for themselves!

Why Do Dogs Pant?
Since dogs cannot sweat through their fur, they sweat from the pads on their feet. Heat is generated through their skin rather than sweat so if they are in an isolated area, they become hot thus giving off more heat which could kill them because they get hotter. Dog's panting is their way of circulating air to keep their mouth from becoming dry. Panting is their way of getting rid of the heat to keep cool.

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.