Pet Safety Tips for the Fall Season
Hooray for a great summer of adventures and lazy days with your favorite pets. Hopefully, you were able to experience some outdoor fun with the beautiful weather we had here in Central Oregon. Perhaps you had some swim days at the river or a great bike ride with your furry friend in tow?!
As summer comes to an end and the days become shorter and cooler, you’ll want to keep some things in mind when it comes to your pet. Any new season brings its own risks for your beloved companions and knowing what to look for will help ensure you keep your pet out of harm's way.
The following list identifies some risks for the upcoming Fall season;
It can be difficult to recognize the difference between toxic and non-toxic mushrooms, especially when there are so many varieties that can grow. The best advice is to just assume all mushrooms are toxic for your pet and remove any that grow wherever your pet spends time. The moisture from sprinklers still running, rain and just the change in outside temperatures can create the perfect environment for mushrooms to start sprouting up in your yard. You’ll want to pay close attention because mushrooms grow quickly and can blend in with dirt and certain grasses. The parasol-shaped mushrooms and any small brown mushrooms are highly toxic. Mushroom poisoning can cause all kinds of symptoms including vomiting, diarrhea, other digestive problems, and liver failure. If you suspect your animal has ingested mushrooms, you’ll want to take them to the vet as soon as possible because the symptoms can go from bad to worse in a matter of hours. We take your pet emergencies very seriously at Blue Sky Veterinary Clinic and want to make sure your pet receives the proper care needed for any situation.
Like the rest of us, rodents seek warmer surroundings as the outside temperatures drop. Those rodents must go somewhere and often they seek refuge inside our homes and garages. If you use any kind of rodenticide, please understand ALL of the chemical ingredients in rodenticides are harmful to your pet, and if ingested, the results could be fatal. If you do have to use them, you’ll want to put them in areas that aren’t accessible to your pets. Mouse or rat traps that lure the rodent in often have poison on the inside of the trap. These traps can seem like something interesting to chew on, so making sure you place those traps in areas that your pet can’t reach. This is highly recommended to ensure safety for your pets as well as any children in your home. Environmental factors play a large roll in pet health, so we suggest keeping your pet's environment free of rodenticides.
The fall is typically when hunting season kicks off in most states. If your pet has access to areas where there could be hunters, you’ll want to make sure your pet is out of harm's way. A helpful tip is to make sure you and your pet are wearing bright, visible colors anytime you are in hunting grounds. Bright orange is a great color that most hunters can easily identify. Be sure to keep your pet out of hunting zones if they have unsupervised roaming time, a dog wandering alone is much more at risk than a dog with a human who is wearing bright colors.
The fall seems to be a popular time for people to change the fluids in their cars. This is a big risk for pets because some of these fluids tend to taste sweet. Antifreeze is one of the sweet tasting fluids that should be cleaned up right away if spilled. Any ethylene glycol-based fluids like coolants are also highly toxic and should be wiped up immediately. If your pet does ingest any car fluids, bring them to the veterinary clinic immediately, as these liquids can cause severe neurological damage and ultimately can be fatal. The symptoms of ingestion include vomiting, weakness, increased water intake, and kidney failure.
SCHOOL SUPPLIES AND BACKPACKS
The fall brings the back-to-school rush where families load up on fresh school supplies and new backpacks. Dogs seem to gravitate to kids backpacks because they often have old lunches or left-over snacks hidden inside. Your dog can smell the food, and some might do anything to get access to the delicious snack, so keeping book bags out of reach keeps you from having to clean up a mess and risk your dog getting sick. Most of the school supplies that are on the market today are non-toxic, so there isn’t much risk with that side of things, however ingesting things like pens, pencils, paperclips, binders, and paper can cause major intestinal discomfort and could even cause a blockage that would require surgery to remove.
Fall is a beautiful time of year with the changing colors and crisp air. Keeping your pet’s safety in mind, as the seasons change, will help you ease into the shorter days with less to worry about and fewer pet emergencies.