Summer can be deadly to pets left outside without proper care. Prevent your pet from becoming a victim by following the OKC Animal Shelter’s tips for pet guardianship during hot weather.
“If it’s too hot for you outside, it’s too hot for your pets,” Animal Welfare Superintendent Julie Bank said. “Bring your animals inside when the temperatures become too extreme.”
Hot weather tips include:
· Keep pets inside during the hottest part of the day. If you must keep your pet outside, provide adequate shade.
· Provide fresh, cool water at all times.
· Exercise your dog in the early morning or late evening, minimizing activity during the middle of the day when it’s too hot.
· Never leave your pet in a parked car during the warm months. An animal’s body temperature can rise to dangerous levels within seconds. Normal body temperature for dogs and cats is between 101 and 103 degrees.
· Consult with a groomer or veterinarian about whether your pet would be more comfortable with shorter fur in the summer. But don’t cut the fur too short.
· Walk your pet on cooler surfaces to protect their feet from burning.
· Pay close attention to older and ill dogs, along with puppies and dogs with short snouts like pugs, boxers and bulldogs.
· Cool down pets showing signs of heat distress using a cool rag. Don’t submerge the pet in water. Take the pet to a veterinarian immediately.
· Call 405-297-2255 if you see an animal in distress. An Animal Welfare officer will investigate.
Always make sure your pet has proper identification on a collar tag, plus permanent identification like a microchip. If you lose a pet, visit www.okc.gov/animalwelfare or go to the Animal Shelter.
The Animal Shelter, SE 29 and S Bryant Avenue, is open from 9 a.m. to 5:45 p.m. every day.
For more information, call 405-297-3100 or visit www.okc.gov/animalwelfare.