Thursday, July 7, 2011


Summertime...a great time of year for trips and fun! But, there are many dangers lurking around every corner...and so we all have to be more careful as we are out and about so much during the summer months. Here are a few tips:

CAR TRAVEL: Many dogs love to ride with their head hanging out the window! So it is very important to make sure your dog is safely secured. Pets can jump or fall out of car windows in a split second. One pet insurance company says that their claim stats show that only 1% of claims related to motor vehicles are associated with pets being inside the vehicle, with almost ALL of those types of claims being related to pets leaping from a moving vehicle due to not being restrained!! So, even though our dogs may love to let their tongues fly with the breeze, ears in the wind, it is not the safest way to travel. Traveling in a carrier or crate is the safest way, but if you prefer to let your dog enjoy the fresh air, you should at least secure him via a pet-approved seat belt or harness. There are many options available on the web and in local pet supply stores.

FOOD ISSUES: Food tends to spoil faster in hotter weather, so all pet care websites recommend that we keep an eye on our pet food supply. Even if the expiration date is far off, if the food gets too hot (which can happen if a box of canned food is left in the car trunk or shed), bacteria can start to grow really quickly. If it doesn't give it on the bag, check with the manufacturer for recommended storage temperature during hot weather. Most cans and bags have the number or website to contact if you have any questions.

DANGER OF FALLS: If you love to let in the summer breezes, be careful your kitty cats do not take a surprise fall from a windowsill or ledge. Despite their flexibility and amazing acrobatic abilities, cats can easily injure themselves if they fall from ledges and windowsills, or much worse. If you're going to leave windows open, make sure screens are securely fastened and in good repair with no holes or tears (cats can easily push through even small tears when determined to do so). Never leave a window or patio door open to an outside area that has a ledge of any sort if there is no screen in place. We all know how much most kitties love to jump up and look out around them! They do not know that there is a danger involved and that they may fall and get hurt or killed. And our dogs may find a way to jump from a higher location as well when excited or frightened. So, leaving any pet unattended with open windows and doors is just as dangerous as leaving a small child unattended. And we do love our pets like we love our children, do we not?

HEALTH HAZARD: A new strain of heartworm infecting dogs and cats in some southern U.S. states has become more of a problem in that region. The new strain is called MP3 and is transmitted by mosquitoes. Sadly it has shown a resistance to traditional heartworm prevention medications. Because this is a new strain, there is little information about how to best treat it, so check with your vet if you have any concern about this new health hazard. And this may be a good time to start using a bug repellant from one of the easy recipes found here: Keeping Insects Off Our Pets

It would be good for all of us to keep these things in mind. I hope everyone can have a safe and happy summer wherever your travels may take you...around town or around the country!

This blog article was submitted by: Debra of Sleepy Cat Designs and Sew Bizzy Gifts. Debra has loved having furry friends as part of her life since she was a small child, along with turtles and birds. She has often worked with and supported various rescue groups and shelters throughout the years. Debra's love also of crafting and sewing has led to the making all types of things for people and their pets so she can continue donating funds to various groups on a local and national level.


El at Tantalizing Stitches said...

I second the car travel tip! My dog Anna jumped out of the window but would only jump out when the car was still. Then she thought it was so funny that she wouldn't get back in. I had to drive and she would follow the car until I finally convinced her to get back in. We were at the beach so I guess she thought it was the perfect time for fun and games!

Creative Critters said...

Excellent tips! My stepbrother's dog jumped out of a moving truck and was never seen again. Years ago the family dog jumped out of a second story window and injured his hip. I'm always very careful to make sure my cats can't get through the screens, and they always travel in a cat carrier in the car.
-Michelle of CreativeCritters