Friday, July 25, 2008

How To Keep Your Pet Healthy In Warm Weather

(SPM Wire) Keeping your pet healthy is important year-round, but especially so in warmer weather when heat and humidity can pose unique risks.

With this in mind, the experts at PetMD.org, the 3-D digital magazine dedicated to pet health care, are serving up some helpful advice:

Keep water in multiple locations for your pet. Water bowls can turn over easily, get dirty or grow bacteria. Also take water with you for your pet when you travel or hike.

Don't leave your pet in the car, as it takes only a few minutes for it to get hot... even with cracked windows. It's actually against the law in many states.

Know your pet's heat tolerance. Heat and humidity, combined with age, health, obesity and type of breed or type of pet all factor into heat tolerance. Dogs and cats -- whose normal body temperature is between 100 and 102.5 degrees -- don't do well in heat, especially if they get dehydrated. Cats sweat through their paws and will lick themselves to cool down, become inactive, and seek cool places. Above 85 or 90 degrees, they can get stressed. Dogs don't lose heat as fast as humans, and, therefore, heat quickly can become a health risk.

Throw away uneaten pet food. Bacteria grow faster when it's hot, so uneaten food should be thrown out. More frequent, smaller portions may be appropriate during warmer months.

For more pet care advice visit www.petmd.org.

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