For those of us braving the Florida summer there are some threats to our pets we need to be aware of…
What should you do if your dog contacts a toad...First thing is to rinse the toxin out of your pet’s mouth which can help it from being absorbed. Be very careful to make sure your dog’s face is pointed downward. The most common complication of a toad toxicity is not the poison but aspirating water into the lungs when the mouth is rinsed out.
Seek care at the closest emergency veterinarian immediately after rinsing out the mouth. With prompt medical treatment most dogs recover well. Many are repeat offenders so don’t assume they learned their lesson.
2. Heat stroke- when body temperature gets too high it can cause irreversible damage to the internal organs and even death. The most common ways this happens is by leaving pets in a car and exercise during the middle of the day.
Avoid leaving your pet in the car even if for just a few minutes. Cracking the window does not help. The temperature inside a car can reach over 130 degrees in a short amount of time.
Exercise during the hottest times of the day is a bad idea. Early in the morning and at night is advised. Make sure to give frequent breaks and lots of water. If your dog is panting heavily after being outside and the body temperature is greater than 103 degrees you must start to actively cool your pet. The best way to do this is with a cool water bath. Ice, although cold, will actually be more harmful as it causes blood vessels in the skin to constrict and prevents heat loss. Additional urgent medical care may be needed as well.
Brachycephalic dogs (those with short noses such as Bulldogs) are at increased risk of heat stroke. Dogs dissipate heat by panting and these breeds have a compressed respiratory tract making it more difficult to release heat by panting.
3. Paw pad burns- People walk with shoes so we don’t feel how hot the surface of asphalt and concrete can get. Especially dark surfaces can get extremely hot and cause burns to the pads of your pets. This is another reason to avoid exercising pets during the hottest times of the day.
Hopefully your pet can stay safe this summer.