It’s time for fall! Who else is ready for crisp air, leaves crunching underfoot, brilliantly colored foliage…and FOOTBALL?! It’s a wonderful time to enjoy the outdoor with your dogs as much as you can! If autumn has you sneezing, curling up with the cat in a sunny window or watching the sunset…earlier and earlier…is pretty nice, too. However, the cooler weather doesn’t mean the ticks are on vacation, and it is really important to keep your tick preventative up to date on all your pets. Ticks LOVE garden and leaf leftovers and can live quite happily there until winter. Keep checking your pets routinely for fleas and ticks regardless of the weather.
Ticks aren’t the only pests to watch out for. Chipmunks, mice, rats and more are focused on stocking up their winter hideouts, and that often means your shed, house, and garage. Pet owners are wise to exercise caution when trapping and baiting for rodents. Be aware that many marketed products are also poisonous to dogs and cats, and if they ingest it…or if they ate a rodent who may have ingested a rodenticide, you need to contact your veterinarian immediately.
Another item of concern: curious canines and kitties and the array of mushrooms popping up everywhere. While some may be safe, many aren’t and if you see your pet going ala carte in the woods, grab some of what he is into and look online for what kind of fungus it is, and if in doubt head to the vet to make sure your pet will be ok! Speaking of eating, as the temperatures drop a bit more food may be needed to keep your pet healthy and comfortable. Food generates energy and active pets and those who spend a lot of time outdoors, need that energy to stay warm. Still on the topic of food, be mindful of what’s cooking in your own kitchen and what’s ending up getting in a tempted pet’s tummy! We humans tend to ramp up our own caloric intake with hearty stews, heavier meals and sweets (Halloween candy abounds!), but greasy high fat foods, chocolates, grapes and raisins can wreak havoc on a pet’s digestive system causing diarrhea and even pancreatitis. A little canned pumpkin is ok and actually helps with loose stool in pets.
Soon we will be in winterizing mode which includes changing anti-freeze. Some brands still doesn’t have the additive to make the sweet smell of ethylene glycol less desirable for pets. One to two teaspoons of this stuff can kill a 10-pound dog! Be sure to clean up any spills immediately and keep the pets out of your garage or work area.
Use care when decorating for the fall season in and outside of the house. Pets are curious creatures and corn stalks, all those colorful and quirky looking gourds and Halloween decorations can be too much to resist, and if eaten very well may cause come throat or bowel obstructions.
And BE SURE your pets microchip information is up to date, pet collars have a secure clasp, and your pet’s ID tags are current and safely affixed to the collar. We like it when we can get lost pets home FAST!