(WWLP) - The dog days of summer are coming, and that could mean potential new hazards for your dogs and cats. From heat, to insects, to table food, there are many things that could lead to an emergency vet visit.
22News spoke with Dr. Ellie Shelburne from the Northampton Veterinary Clinic about some of the common and no-so-common hazards your pet could encounter this summer.
- One common summer hazard: hyperthermia. Hyperthermia is what happens when the body temperature rises due to exposure to excessive heat. Many veterinarians see this condition when pets are left in cars.
"If a dog is left in a car, with the windows closed, cars can get hot very quickly, so if it's 75-degrees out and they're in a car, within 10 minutes, it can reach 100-degrees," Shelburne said.
- One of the most common things veterinarians see during the summer is dogs with porcupine quills. It's important to bring your pet to an animal hospital if it has been quilled.
"We commonly will find if they've hit the face, that they're also in the back of the throat, or the roof of the mouth or something dangerous. If they break, quills can migrate under the skin into all sorts of places; the lungs and heart," Shelburne said.
- Many animals have allergic reactions to bee stings and spider bites as well. If your pet is bitten by a snake, like a rattlesnake or copperhead, you should make a trip to your local vet office.
- This is something you may not think about: sadly, veterinary hospitals see many drowning cases. Animals can drown in pools and rivers; especially when there is a fast current after heavy rain.
"Just the same things you need to do around a pool to keep kids safe, you need that for your pet as well, because they can get in and not be able to get out and drown," Shelburne said.
- Finally, watch out for what you feed your pet at the picnic. Chicken, ribs, and corn on the cob are popular summer foods, but they can be harmful to your dog. They can easily choke on the cobs or bones; especially when left in compost piles.
Just keep a close eye on your pet this summer, and you'll avoid an expensive trip to the vet's office.