For pet owners, warm weather means quality time outside with their four-legged friends. Due dogto the heat and humidity, summer can also bring health risks that are important to consider. As we approach the warmest weeks of the season, the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association (OVMA) suggests the following tips so you can keep your pets healthy and happy:

• Taking your canine for a ride can be fun for dogs and owners alike, but a parked car can overheat quickly. Even after a few minutes of sun exposure, the temperature inside a car can reach close to 50°C, which can pose a serious health risk to your pet.

• More time outside can mean an increased risk of encountering parasites. Be proactive and talk to your veterinarian to find out how best to fend off fleas, ticks and other pests. Heart worm disease, in particular, can cause significant damage if not detected early.

• Even though they may be covered in fur, pets are susceptible to the sun’s damaging UV rays. Talk to your veterinarian to learn about specially-formulated sunblock for pets to keep them safe and comfortable.

• Just as we like to enjoy a cool beverage on a hot day, so do our animals. Make sure your pets are hydrated at all times by offering them fresh, cool water regularly.

• No matter whether you live in a rural area, spend time at the cottage, or plan to camp outdoors, it’s important to be aware of wildlife. Some wild animals may feel threatened by pets and cause them serious harm. Keep a close eye on your pet and always keep them on a leash in public areas.

• If you plan on traveling with your pet, be sure to book an appointment with your veterinarian to ensure it is travel-healthy and equipped for a trip, regardless of distance.

Written by Cleo Neufeld

Cleo Neufeld

Before meeting the love of her life, Cleo was a single mother to a beautiful little girl for many years. She shares her expertise in single parenting, building a relationship, living on a budget and more.