BUSTER BEATS THE HEAT
. I have featured Buster in the blog before as he has the most colorful personality, even though he is black with the exception of his chest patch of white. He knows a lot of tricks by hand signals and loves to make his run to Lowes with Greg, riding in the cart. He sounds like he is braver than he actually is. If you have to be convinced, the limb snapping under his paws and giving him such a startled reaction; Buster went airborne imitating a cat’s leap. Oh yes, we have fun with Buster and I could write a book on his antics (maybe I will soon). This summer’s temperatures has kept Buster inside more and I thought it would be helpful to share some ideas on keeping our fur babies cool and comfortable. As special as we think Buster is to us, I am sure all of you love your pets and want them to be around for a long time. Here are some tips for the summer:
Practice basic summer safety
Never leave your pets in a parked car
Not even for a minute. Not even with the car running and air conditioner on. On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees. Your pet may suffer irreversible organ damage or die. Learn how to help a pet left inside a hot car »
Print our hot car flyer [PDF] and spread the life-saving word »
Watch the humidity
“It’s important to remember that it’s not just the ambient temperature but also the humidity that can affect your pet,” says Dr. Barry Kellogg, VMD, of the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association. “Animals pant to evaporate moisture from their lungs, which takes heat away from their body. If the humidity is too high, they are unable to cool themselves, and their temperature will skyrocket to dangerous levels—very quickly.”
Taking a dog’s temperature will quickly tell you if there is a serious problem. Dogs’ temperatures should not be allowed to get over 104 degrees. If your dog’s temperature does, follow the instructions for treating heat stroke.
Limit exercise on hot days
Take care when exercising your pet. Adjust intensity and duration of exercise in accordance with the temperature. On very hot days, limit exercise to early morning or evening hours, and be especially careful with pets with white-colored ears, who are more susceptible to skin cancer, and short-nosed pets, who typically have difficulty breathing. Asphalt gets very hot and can burn your pet’s paws, so walk your dog on the grass if possible. Always carry water with you to keep your dog from dehydrating.
Don’t rely on a fan
Pets respond differently to heat than humans do. (Dogs, for instance, sweat primarily through their feet.) And fans don’t cool off pets as effectively as they do people.
Provide ample shade and water
Any time your pet is outside, make sure he or she has protection from heat and sun and plenty of fresh, cold water. In heat waves, add ice to water when possible. Tree shade and tarps are ideal because they don’t obstruct air flow. A doghouse does not provide relief from heat—in fact, it makes it worse.
Cool your pet inside and out
Whip up a batch of quick and easy DIY peanut butter popsicles for dogs. (You can use peanut butter or another favorite food.) And always provide water, whether your pets are inside or out with you.
Keep your pet from overheating indoors or out with a cooling body wrap, vest, or mat (such as the Keep Cool Mat). Soak these products in cool water, and they’ll stay cool (but usually dry) for up to three days. If your dog doesn’t find baths stressful, see if she enjoys a cooling soak.
Watch for signs of heatstroke
Extreme temperatures can cause heatstroke. Some signs of heatstroke are heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever, dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, a deep red or purple tongue, seizure, and unconsciousness.
Animals are at particular risk for heat stroke if they are very old, very young, overweight, not conditioned to prolonged exercise, or have heart or respiratory disease. Some breeds of dogs—like boxers, pugs, shih tzus, and other dogs and cats with short muzzles—will have a much harder time breathing in extreme heat.
How to treat a pet suffering from heatstroke
Move your pet into the shade or an air-conditioned area. Apply ice packs or cold towels to her head, neck, and chest or run cool (not cold) water over her. Let her drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes. Take her directly to a veterinarian.
Prepare for power outages
Before a summer storm takes out the power in your home, create a disaster plan to keep your pets safe from heat stroke and other temperature-related trouble.
Keep Pets Safe in the Heat is the article from the Humane Society of the United States
How, where to cool animals down when temps soar
I thought I would provide one of the first blog posts I wrote about Buster. Our little Yorkie, Bandit is waiting at the Rainbow Bridge. Each one of our fur babies have been unique and I can assure we love and miss each one of them. I feel God blesses us with animals who love us in spite of our flaws. RIP Bandit and RIP Whiskers (who is a book in itself waiting to be written).
TODAY THE WORDS are THE WORLD ACCORDING TO BUSTER. Usually every morning, our Yorkie, Bandit lays next to me while I write the blog. I make the statement to him, “Are you ready to help me write the blog?” He just backs up closer and lays still. This morning, however, Bandit sat at the end of the bed and Buster, our rowdy Papillon, took Bandit’s place. He was looking up at me and touching the laptop with his nose, curious as he normally is, and as the topics come spontaneously, Buster gave me the inspiration for this message. Let’s look at life through the eyes of Buster and see how it shapes up. Buster was rescued as a puppy so his life, like so many displaced children was turned upside down at a very early age. He was given to strangers and had to adapt to a new home and new “parents”. Buster is unique (and I am sure all doggy owners feel the same) but while Bandit is a passive dog; Buster somehow thinks he is a showman and has to put on his shows. He doesn’t see anything wrong with clipping Greg’s socks and as all of his treasures, they find their way to his hiding place which is under our bed. He “prances like a Dressage” across our back yard and doesn’t hesitate being protective when he hears a noise. He, however, gets scared and it is so obvious when he is scared. Being all black with the exception of a white blaze on his neck, when he exposes the whites of his eyes, we call them crazy eyes. But this is the exception and usually Buster is full steam ahead and taking no prisoners. He does a lot of tricks by hand commands but all of this is not the deeper thought I had…….We live in a world we have to adjust as Buster had to adjust. We face new challenges each day and we react similar to Buster. Some days we are so excited about something new; we prance too. Other days we get scared when our world has had an unexpected jolt such as a loss, a sickness, job changes, or tragedy. We probably get our “crazy eyes” too. Then there are the days, just like Buster, we want to be petted and shown love for comfort. As Buster and Bandit too, have us to make sure they are fed and given treats; God gives us the same as His Children. God comforts when we are scared, showers us with blessings or “treats”; allows us to learn “tricks” or lessons of life; and above all, God loves us and takes care of us. The world according to Buster can be the same for us knowing Our Master loves us and wants us to be happy and joyous like Buster.
DAILY FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Psalm 103:13 ESV
As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
(c) copyright 2012-2016 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material sourced to original source.