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Keep your pets cool in Summer

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Keeping your Pet Cool in the summer heat

Heat and humidity can make some summer days very uncomfortable, not just for us but also for our pets. Most pets are susceptible to similar dangers that we face in the heat- including heatstroke and sunburn.

For older, small or otherwise fragile pets, at times heat can prove fatal. The RSPCA states that "It is vital that animals have constant access to both water and shade, as heat stress can develop extremely quickly in hot weather during summer.

Read on for our top tips on keeping your pet/s healthy and cool this summer.

Basic Pet Heat Safety Guidelines

Never leave any pet/s confined to a car- (this is dangerous even if the windows are open and the car is parked in the shade).

Never leave your pets in a situation where they do not have access to shade, ventilation and fresh drinking water.

Take it easy - On a hot day, do not encourage your pet to run around or play, instead encourage rest and moderate activity only.

water_bottle.jpg

Keep your pet cool with a
frozen water bottle

Keeping your Pet cool- our top tips

  • Provide plenty of shade, all day long - install shade cloth/ shade sails or use shade umbrellas to provide shelter from the heat. Consider using pet sunscreen to protect from sunburn.
  • Consider allowing outdoor animals inside access to a room cooled by electric fans or air conditioning.
  • Ensure your pet has access to water all day long- keep an eye on their water bowl/s, top it up as needed and try to keep it in the shade. Consider adding extra water bowl/s on a hot day.
  • Add ice cubes to water bowls (Keep an eye on your pet to make sure they are not scared by this and will continue to drink their water)
  • Some pets often tip over their water bowl, consider using one made of heavy material to prevent it tipping (e.g. ceramic).
  • Provide access to water for cooling off in the shade, e.g. a wading pool, or a wet towel. Always supervise your animals around a wading pool.
  • Fill a small plastic bottle with water and leave it in the freezer overnight. The next morning, wrap it in a tool and place it in your pets favorite lounging spot.
  • For indoor pets- keep your curtains closed on a hot day to keep the room cooler.
  • Fill a water bottle or or empty milk bottle with water and freeze. Add it to a rabbit/guinea pig hutch or Chicken coop. Your pets will lay next to the bottle to keep cool.
  • Do NOT use freezer packs/ice bricks as rabbits and other animals can chew them and they may contain hazardous contents.

Keeping your Dog/Cat cool

dog_paddling_pool.jpg

a paddling pool is great (for supervised play)

  • Elevate your pets bed to allow air to circulate underneath, which will help keep them cool.
  • For cats/dogs with long fur- a haircut may be beneficial, provided they have shelter from the sun so as not to get sunburn. Even just shaving a cats stomach can help.
  • Cats cool themselves down by licking their fur. You can help by using a damp cloth or paper towel to stroke your cat.
  • Always walk your dog in the early morning or late evening to avoid the heat of the day.
  • Consider making iceblocks for your kitty. Place wet cat food and water in the bottom of a plastic bowl or cup and leave overnight to freeze. Place in your cats bowl the next day for a cool tasty treat.

Keeping your Chickens cool

  • Provide small bags of ice, wrap them in wet towels and place them in the coop.
  • Spray chooks with a mist pump spray bottle ( if they like it!) or install a bird bath for supervised use.
  • Drape their coop with cool wet towels
  • Consider using ice to cool down the coop, by placing an ice pack underneath the coop.

Keeping your Rabbit/Guinea Pigs cool

  • Provide small bags of ice, wrap them in wet towels and place them in the hutch.
  • Drape their enclosure with cool wet towels
  • Place a ceramic tile or marble square in your pets favorite rest area, provided it is out of the sun. Lying on it will help them cool down.
  • Mist your bunnies ears. Rabbits lose heat through their ears and misting them will help keep the rabbit cool.
  • Consider using ice to cool down the coop, by placing an ice brick underneath their hutch.
  • Fill a water bottle or or empty milk bottle with water and freeze. Add it to a rabbit/guinea pig hutch or Chicken coop. Your pets will lay next to the bottle to keep cool.
  • Do NOT use freezer packs/ice bricks as rabbits and other animals can chew them and they may contain hazardous contents.

Sources

 

Toni_Benton_-_Somerzby_Pet_Enclosures.jpgToni Benton - Toni has a lot of experience with keeping pets and pet enclsoures, with her very cheeky British shorthair cat named Charlie and a rescue cat Rosie who is now nearly 17. Toni's pets also includes Dwarf Lop rabbits and Australorp cross Chickens.

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