Following on from our last post regarding how to keep your dog safe, here are some more important things to consider when caring for the well-being of your canine family members…
Hazardous To Dogs:
• Plants and Plant Bulbs.
Many plant varieties are toxic to dogs (and, incidentally, to cats as well). Some are outright poisonous and can result in death if ingested; others will cause gastrointestinal upset. While fresh grass is fine, dogs should be kept away from many other plants, and should be trained very early to not dig up or chew on vegetation in the yard or anywhere outdoors. Your local vet can provide a list of what plants are safe and which ones must be avoided at all costs.
• Children’s Toys and Games.
These present a choking hazard to dogs – and unlike dog-specific toys, are unsafe for your pooch. Remember too, to keep things like dice, jigsaw puzzle pieces, board game counters, bubble bath, Lego pieces, blowing bubbles, etc out of reach of doggies. All are appealing for eating; all are dangerous if swallowed.
• Electrical Cords.
Make sure all electrical cords are hidden or inaccessible. The temptation to chew is too great – and not only might Fido get electrocuted, a faulty wire (as a result of a dog’s teeth) might cause a fire down the track.
A significant number of dogs meet an untimely demise by ingesting baits which have been placed to eliminate snails, rats, ants, cockroaches, etc. It is a painful and unpleasant way to die. Always place these in an area which your dog can’t access, and if you ever have reason to suspect the dog has eaten a bait, take him to the vet immediately.
• Car Travel
Just as humans need to be safe when travelling in a vehicle on the road, so do our four legged friends. A cat is placed in a carrier for car travel; so too, a dog should also be restrained safely for car trips. Secure a smaller dog in a carrier, or in a canine-specific seat belt; larger dogs should be buckled up in a seat belt specifically designed for dogs. Not only might it save your dog’s life in a collision; it might save humans in the car as well. An unrestrained dog in a car can be a dangerous projectile at high speed.
• Heat Stroke
Dogs suffer in the heat every bit as much as people do. Always supply your dog with shade and shelter, fresh water to drink, and even the opportunity for a cool bath or swim in summer. NEVER leave your dog in the car during warm weather, and never parked in the sun. And remember – the sun moves. That shady spot now might be in the sun a in a surprisingly short time.
• Hazards when Walking
Always be aware of hazardous flora, fauna (snakes, ticks, leaches, etc) as well as unrestrained and unfriendly other dogs. Beware of broken glass, hot pavement, bindies, and other things on walks which may injure your dog’s paws.
Love your dog and care for him or her as you would for your children. Prevention is always better than cure – so keep your dog safe from the outset.