Veterinary Blog

Summer Fun with Furry Friends: Keeping Your Pet Safe in the Sun in Chilliwack


Summer’s here, and with it comes longer days, warmer temperatures, and hopefully, plenty of outdoor adventures with your furry best friend. But that sunshine and heat can also pose dangers to our pets.

Here at Vedder Mountain Veterinary Clinic in Chilliwack, we want to ensure your companion has a safe and happy summer. That’s why we’re sharing some essential summer safety tips for pets, from preventing overheating to keeping them cool and comfortable on long, sunny days. Let’s dive in!

Heatstroke: The Silent Summer Threat

Heatstroke is a severe condition that occurs when a pet’s body temperature rises rapidly to dangerous levels. It’s a medical emergency and requires immediate veterinary attention.

Here are some signs of heatstroke to watch out for:

  • Excessive panting and drooling
  • Glazed eyes or lethargy
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Wobbly walking or disorientation
  • Seizures or unconsciousness

The good news is that heatstroke is entirely preventable! Here are some proactive measures you can take to keep your pet cool and comfortable:

  • Ensure your pet has access to fresh, clean water at all times. Carry a portable bowl and water dispenser on walks or hikes. Consider adding ice cubes to their water bowl at home for an extra refreshing treat.
  • Limit outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day, typically between 10 am and 4 pm. Schedule walks and playtime for early mornings or evenings when the sun is less intense.
  • Provide ample shade for your pet whenever they’re outdoors. A shady spot under a tree, a pop-up tent, or an umbrella can make a big difference.
  • Asphalt can get scorching hot under the summer sun. Walking your dog on grass or cooler surfaces during midday is much safer for their paws.
  • There are several ways to help your pet cool down. Give them a refreshing bath with cool (not cold) water, mist them with a spray bottle, or offer them a cooling mat to lie on. Frozen treats made with pet-safe ingredients like watermelon or frozen bone broth can be a fun and hydrating option, too.

Summertime Dangers Beyond the Heat

While heatstroke is a major concern, other summer hazards can threaten your pet’s safety:

  • Fireworks: The loud booms and bright flashes of fireworks can be terrifying for pets. Keep them safe and secure indoors during firework displays. Consider playing calming music or turning on the TV to mask the noise.
  • Swimming Pools: Not all pets are natural swimmers. If you have a pool, ensure your pet has a safe way to enter and exit the water. A pet ramp or life vest can be helpful. Never leave your pet unattended near a pool.
  • Toxic Plants and Algae: Some summer plants and algae blooms can be toxic to pets. If you’re unsure about a plant in your yard or encounter algae at a lake or pond, it’s best to keep your pet away from it.
  • Pests: Fleas, ticks, and mosquitos are more prevalent in summer. Maintain a regular parasite prevention regimen recommended by your veterinarian.

Summer Fun for Everyone

Summer is a time for creating lasting memories with your pet. Here are some ideas for sader fe and enjoyable summer activities:

  • Cooling Walks: Early morning or evening walks are a great way to get exercise and explore new places.
  • Beach Days: If your dog enjoys the water, a trip to the beach can be a fun outing. Bring plenty of water, keep them cool under an umbrella, and avoid the hottest part of the day.
  • Backyard Adventures: Set up a kiddie pool for a refreshing splash, or create an obstacle course with tunnels and sprinklers.
  • Frozen Treats: For a delicious and hydrating snack, whip up some homemade frozen treats with pet-safe ingredients like yogurt or blended fruits.

Your Pet’s Veterinarian in Chilliwack

Here at Vedder Mountain Veterinary Clinic, we are here for your pet throughout the summer season. Our experienced team can provide guidance on summer safety and help you protect your pet. We’re also here for you if your furry friend shows any signs of heat-related illness. Contact us today to request an appointment with a Chilliwack veterinarian, and have a safe, happy summer!

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