Springtime Safety Tips for Dogs
The weather is warming up and flowers are starting to bloom, which means it’s time to move over winter! With spring on the way, pet parents and their canine companions can look forward to spending more time outdoors. Spring also means a few other things are on the way, like seasonal allergies, fleas, and ticks. To ensure you and your pup can get the most out of springtime, keep these five safety tips in mind.
Fleas and Ticks
Spring is a very active time of year for a lot of creatures, including fleas and ticks. In addition to making your pet uncomfortable, these pests can spread a range of diseases. You can keep an eye out for these unwelcome guests by checking your dog for any signs of fleas or ticks after a walk (especially if you were in long grass or a forested area). There are also preventative medications available that can help protect your dog from fleas and ticks. Check with your vet to see if these medications are right for your furry family member.
Just like us, pets get seasonal allergies. Common signs of allergies in dogs include red, irritated skin, itchiness, sneezing, and watery eyes. If your dog experiences these symptoms, your vet can prescribe medication to help treat and alleviate their discomfort. They may also run other tests to ensure there’s nothing else causing these issues.
Many dogs shed seasonally, especially during the spring and fall. During this time, you may notice a lot of extra dog hair around your home. Depending on the breed, some will need daily brushing during shedding season while others are ok with a weekly brushing session. Regular brushing will help prevent matting and reduce the (sometimes surprising) number of tufts of dog hair you come across.
Unsafe Spring Plants
Spring: it’s the time of year most gardeners can’t wait for. Seasonal favorites like tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, and crocuses are some of the first to appear. While these flowers bring splashes of much-needed color to your garden after the winter months, they are toxic to dogs and can cause vomiting, diarrhea, drooling, and other, more severe issues if ingested. We suggest keeping curious pups away from these spring plants as consuming any part of the plant can be harmful. The bulbs of daffodils, hyacinths, and tulips are especially toxic.
Many cleaning products contain ingredients that can be harmful to pets – so be sure to keep them well out of your dog’s reach! While there are pet-safe alternative cleaning products available, it’s important to also store them in a place your dog can’t get to – and always read and follow the label. If you’re doing some housework, make sure your dog can relax in a pet-safe place until the chores are done.
While many of us look forward to spring, it's important to be prepared for some of the challenges the season brings, like fleas, ticks, and toxic plants. By keeping these tips in mind, you can help ensure both you and your fuzzy friend can enjoy all that spring has to offer!