With spring comes the opportunity to spend more time outdoors with our pets, bring in new items of the food and plant varietals, and do some cleaning. What you may not realize is that these activities and actions can be detrimental to your pets if you’re not careful. Sometimes spring-related activities can cause a trip to the vet because they had a bad reaction to something they ate or stepped on. Following are a few spring safety tips to keep your pets safe so they can enjoy the fresh air and sunshine without worry.
Home Improvements and Cleaning
With warm weather comes the opportunity to open the windows and clean or get to that home improvement project that's been on hold since winter. Both of these activities mean unleashing a flurry of irritants into the air, chemicals on the floor, and sharp tools that a paw can step on.
Keep in mind that your furry friends can be affected by chemicals used in cleaners and can be allergic to dust that's been kicked up from cleaning or construction. Make sure to use household cleaners and chemicals that are pet safe to prevent delicate tissues from getting irritated. Keep tools off the floor and away from curious paws and mouths, use plastic sheeting to prevent construction dust from reaching other rooms, and sweep the floor to remove sharp objects that can pierce sensitive foot pads.
Be Careful at Easter
Easter brings a plethora of colorful objects and meaningful plants into the home. One of the more popular plants associated with Easter is the Easter Lily. Unfortunately, this delicate flower is toxic to cats if digested. All plants in the lily family are toxic to cats, but the season means Easter Lilies are more likely to be brought into the home. The same warning goes for daffodils which are a popular flower in springtime bouquets. Keep toxic plants out of the home to prevent an accidental poisoning.
Eggs, both plastic and real, are another common sight in the home. Dogs love nothing more than to eat a boiled egg for its delicious taste and protein. And they won't distinguish between a boiled egg that's been colored from a colorful plastic egg. It's OK to feed a dog the boiled egg, but don't let dogs eat a boiled egg with an intact shell as it can cause gastrointestinal distress. You also want to keep plastic eggs out of their reach to avoid consumption and an unexpected vet visit.
Step Up the Preventative Medications
Warmer temperatures bring out the bugs. And those bugs love nothing more than to find themselves a meal after lying dormant all winter. Fleas and mosquitoes are known to carry the larvae of parasites and transmit them to their chosen target.
Stop parasites from taking up residents on your pets’ skin by using preventative medications like flea repellent and anti-parasite medications. Heartworm medications are used year-round for dogs, but cats don't receive the same preventative treatment as they are less likely to carry the parasite. Treat your cats and dogs with approved flea repellants and get a fecal and/or blood test to check for parasite load before treating with a de-wormer.