It’s springtime in the Connecticut Shoreline and everyone is ready to spend more time outside. Because our pets are just as excited as we are, it’s important we prioritize their safety this time of year. Today, we’re going to discuss spring pet safety and how to keep your pet safe as temperatures rise.
Yes, our pets can suffer from seasonal allergies just like us. Unfortunately, they cannot tell us they are uncomfortable therefore it lies on us to watch for symptoms.
Watch for itchy skin, eyes, and paws this spring, which could signal allergies. Seasonal allergies can manifest in a dog’s ears with shaking, scratching and waxy build-up, and in a dog’s posterior areas with the infamous bootie scoot and licking around their bottom. Keep an eye out for labored or taxed breathing, coughing, and wheezing, which can be more common in cats.
Learn more about dealing with your pet’s suspected seasonal and environmental allergies here. Also, consider trying these allergy chews from WinPro Pet or other supplements as recommended by Dog’s Naturally Magazine.
If your pet does not appear to get relief from over-the-counter remedies and supplements, please discuss additional treatment options with your veterinary team. Please refrain from using over-the-counter medicine for humans to manage your pet’s allergies without first consulting with your veterinarian.
Springtime is a great time to clean out our closets, donate stuff that we’re no longer using, and purge the clutter. Unfortunately, however, spring cleaning can present two common pet dangers.
Chemicals & Poisons
When cleaning your home or doing household projects this spring, it’s important to consider the products you use. Prevent ingestion of chemicals and poisons by using non-toxic products such as Force of Nature, DIY white vinegar solutions, and DIY baking soda-based solutions. Beware the commercially available cleaners that contain toxic chemicals that could cause chemical burns, respiratory issues, and more in household pets. Keep in mind that our cats and dogs lick their paws, which means that what they walk on inevitably ends up in their bodies.
Don’t forget to check all plants that will be in your home and near your pets for potential toxicity. The ASPCA has a very thorough guide to plants and pets here. If you have a cat, you should be especially cautious to avoid Easter lilies.
Accidental Pet Loss
While we understand that opening windows and letting the sunshine inside our homes is a perk of spring cleaning season, please check your window screens to ensure your pet doesn’t accidentally get out. Pet losses are common this time of year because pet parents will accidentally leave doors and windows open, tempting their pets to go on an outdoor adventure. Pets will already be enjoying the scents and flavors of the season therefore don’t forget to close doors behind you when carrying packages, sorting donations, etc.
In addition to minding your windows and doors, make sure your leashes, collars, and harnesses are in good working condition. Size your collars properly, use harnesses as needed, and stick to a standard 6-foot leash for walks. The right equipment is the best way to prevent accidental losses.
Also, if you have a fenced yard, springtime is a good time to have it looked at by a professional. We encourage you to check the structure of the fence, have gaps filled, and reinforce the fence as needed. The winter months can wreak havoc on fencing materials. It’s better to be safe than sorry by hiring a pro to check it out before letting your dogs out for a romp in the yard.
Finally, if your pet is not microchipped, we highly recommend you consider making this month the month you microchip your pet. Microchips save lives, reunite families, and are the responsible thing to do for our beloved pets. Shoreline Animal Hospital in Clinton and Shelton Veterinary Center in Shelton provide microchipping services. Contact your vet with any questions you may have about microchipping.
Pests including parasites are common in the spring. Fungi such as ringworm tend to spread when the environment is damp. Fleas and ticks are back in full force starting in the spring. In Connecticut, we have an especially large number of ticks. The City of Lyme is where Lymes disease, a tick-borne disease was named. And, as temperatures rise, it’s only a matter of time before mosquitos begin to make a regular appearance.
Because pests can make your pets very ill, we urge you to discuss preventatives with your veterinary team. Please keep in mind that pest control must be species-appropriate. Using a dog product on a cat or vice versa can be fatal. In addition, a pet that has a history of vaccine or preventative reaction should have preventatives administered in the presence of a veterinarian.
Because of the prevalence of pests, spring is a popular time for home pest control. Please be aware of what you’re spraying and how long pets need to stay off and away from treated areas to avoid injury or illness.
When scheduling your service provider, please let them know that you have pets that access your outdoor areas. Insist that they use non-toxic materials when possible. And, avoid weed killers and pesticides with dangerous ingredients. Because our pets tend to sniff, lick, and roll in our grass, everything you or your landscaper puts in your lawn will make its way into your pet.
As the CT Shoreline’s most highly rated pet care company, we want to see you and your families thrive. We love our pet clients and want them to live long, happy lives along with their humans. To learn more about our expert team of professional pet sitters and dog walkers and how we can help you manage your schedule this spring, contact us. We provide dog walking, pet sitting, and other pet care services in the following service areas:
- Old Saybrook
- Essex, Ivoryton & Centerbrook
- Deep River
- Old Lyme
- East Lyme
Certain Parts and Certain Service Hours in:
- Lyme and Madison
- Waterford, New London, Groton
Certain Parts and Certain Service Hours in:
- Uncasville, Gales Ferry, Mystic, Noank