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Are you ready for fun in the sun with your pup this summer? Everyone loves this warmer season. This is the time for fun trips, late nights, and days out by the beach. The only thing that can make it any more enjoyable is spending this time with your beloved dog.
Although summer has a way of melting our worries away, we still want to remember to be safe, and we want our pooches to stay safe as well. Regardless of if you are going camping, taking an exotic vacation, or spending the season in the backyard, keep these tips in mind to keep your dog safe and sound.
Traveling to Your Summer Destination
Whether you are going camping or visiting the beaches of Aruba, the first step is getting there — and if you are bringing your faithful pooch, then you will want to keep them safe during the trip. If you are traveling by plane, you need to plan your travel dates appropriately because certain airlines won’t fly dogs during particular months or times of the day due to the extreme heat they may face. In most cases, you will be shipping your dog underneath the plane, so make sure to have ice packs and plenty of water in their crates during the hotter months.
Safety must also be a primary concern during long road trips. Of course, under no circumstances should you ever leave your dog in a hot car, even when it is just a quick trip into a gas station or restaurant, as you never know what could happen and how long you could be in there. Also, always have plenty of fresh water available for when they get thirsty, and know how to recognize the signs and treat an overheated dog.
If you are living the RV life, then other safety precautions must be made. Although there is more space, never let your dog roam freely in the RV while you are driving and it is also unsafe to keep them in your lap. Instead, use a seat belt harness or a carrier that is secured in place. Regardless of how you take to the road, it is a good idea to have your dog either in possession of a microchip or a collar with identifying information and have it on them at all times in case they ever run out of the vehicle in a foreign place.
Camping is one of the most relaxing and adventurous activities you can partake in during summer vacation, especially when you bring a dog that loves to run and play. Of course, while they love to explore, there are also many hazards in nature that dogs should avoid and safety tips you should follow. Ideally, you should keep your pooch on a leash, especially when you are not directly by their side, and stay on all marked trails to avoid trouble.
Although many are harmless, there are several plants that should be avoided, including poison ivy and oak, because if eaten, they can lead to diarrhea and vomiting, as well as causing itching and discomfort. Then there are pests such as mites, ticks, and mosquitoes, which cause health issues for humans and dogs alike. The best protection is to be proactive by purchasing and applying a tick and pest repellent just in case.
There are many fun activities that go hand in hand with camping, including having a fire and launching fireworks. Be cautious with your dogs around these events as well. Keep the dog away from the fire and if your dogs are afraid of fireworks, keep them in a quiet place or, in extreme cases, use a calming agent.
Many owners have been looking into new trends for caring for dogs for these and other health issues, with the most common being homeopathic medicine. Essentially, these are natural medications that encourage the body to heal itself. It might be helpful to bring some of the most common homeopathic remedies on your camping trip, including Silica, which can expel harmful thorns and Borax, which can calm dogs during loud fireworks. One thing to remember with all homeopathic medicines is to use the remedies and not the powder or chemical versions.
Staycation Summer Fun
While there are plenty of dangers to be aware of while out on the road, you should also keep your dog safe during those summer staycations. If you have a backyard BBQ, be sure to keep the pooch away from the hot grill both to protect them from the heat and protect your other guests should the dog choose to jump up and knock the grill over. Also make sure to cover your outdoor trash cans because, during a party, everything from empty bottles of lighter fluid to bamboo skewers could make their way into the garbage and into your dog’s mouth.
If you desire to lay out by the pool, it is important to keep an eye on your dog, especially if you have a young puppy. Of course, you should always watch the pool and make sure there is a dependable fence for when you are not near it. If you want your pups to join you in the water, then train them how to exit the pool properly, and if they are just learning to swim, get them a life jacket so they can float along with you.
Of course, warmer summer temps may mean more walks to the dog park. When walking, always check the temperature of the pavement, and try to go during cooler times of the day, like early morning or late evening. While you are there, follow the rules of the park and make sure your pup is properly vaccinated. To keep your dog safe, it is important that you can recognize the signs of aggressive behaviors from the other pets including bared teeth and growling. In the unfortunate event that you or your dog is bitten by another, you need to have a plan in place including seeking immediate medical care, carefully documenting the incident, and reporting it to the proper authorities so your life can resume normally as soon as possible.
With its warm temperatures, increased freedom, and tons of stuff to do, summer is the best season of the year for you and your dog to take a vacation and relax. Just remember that when it comes to your pet, fun and responsibility go hand in hand.
Jori Hamilton is a writer from the pacific northwest. You can follow her on twitter @Jori Hamilton and see more of her work at writerjorihamilton.contently.com.
I like what you said about making sure to camp safely with pets. My husband and I were hoping to take our dog on a camping trip, but it’s too far away. We’ll have to board him instead, but it will be okay!