Spring is finally HERE! As the weather gets nicer some dangers can pop up for the animals in our lives and neighbourhoods. Warmer weather brings out lots of pesky critters. A pet owners main concerns are fleas, ticks and parasitic infections. If pets frequent the outdoors, attend daycare, boarding facilities, or a groomer then preventive flea treatment is needed. Pets with a flea infestation will become itchy and abnormally scratch, lick and bite at themselves. They can get red patches on their skin, have some hair loss and you may notice “flea dirt” (small black/brown patches) on their skin. If you notice pale gums, this can be a sign of anemia.
- Anemia can be caused by a serious infestation of fleas when the body can no longer produce enough red blood cells to combat the feeding fleas.
- Ticks gather in grassy fields, wooded areas, gardens, and beaches waiting for a host, like yourself or your pet, to jump onto and feed. Cats and dogs with very active lifestyles can use preventive tick products to reduce the risk of tick-borne illnesses. It’s important to do a tick check after outings with your pet by running your fingers through their fur applying pressure to feel for any small bumps. You can purchase tick twister or key products for safely removing attached ticks.
- Parasitic infections, such as worms can be picked up from an animal ingesting things they shouldn’t. Cat owners may find mice on their doorstep and dogs get into some pretty gross situations. Fecal testing and deworming medication may be necessary. Some of the symptoms your pet may experience include scooting and/or licking at their rear end, diarrhea, a bloated stomach, and visible worms in their stool. Don’t rely on seeing those nasty worms though, not all worms are visible to the naked eye! If you have concerns seek medical advice from your Veterinarian.
- Gardening with care is very important for both your indoor and outdoor gardens. Certain plants can be toxic to dogs, cats, and many other species. When choosing plants and seeds for the garden.
- Be very cautious when using products such as fertilizers, insecticides, and herbicides.
- Follow the directions on the bottle and store in a secured location. There are several alternatives to chemical products on the market and many things you can D-I-Y. Acid-loving plants can benefit from a white vinegar solution and eggs shells are approximately 96% calcium which can help strengthen the cellular structure of plants
- If you choose to have a toxic plant in your home, place it in a location where your pets do not have access…
Spring cleaning and home improvements are a time-honoured tradition for many households. Reading labels of cleaning products carefully or choosing natural alternatives can help protect your pets. Paints and other home improvements products should always be kept in a secure location. Physical hazards such as nails, staples, blades and debris from projects are dangerous to wandering paws and loose lips, it is best to confine your pet to a safe room or crate while you are preoccupied cleaning and working.
Follow these tips and all your family members will enjoy spring!
Written by Jessica, Vet Assistant