Summer in the City
Health Matters! 10 Tips for Making Sure Your Pet is Festival Ready
Taking your dog to community events can be a lot of fun and exciting but these events can be very crowded, not only with people but also with other pets! Be sure your dog is in good health to attend. Immune compromised pets should not be exposed to other animals.
• Know your Dog and his Temperament
While Calgarians may love the excitement of the summer festival season with the throngs of people, food, entertainment and music, your dog may not. It’s important to consider what creates stress for your dog and know how he or she responds to crowds, changes to his or her environment, other animals and loud noises. Fearful, reactive or dogs with behavioural issues, will likely be happiest in the comfort of their own home or familiar setting. Shy or timid dogs, or the senior dog who tires easily may find festivals too demanding.
• Ensure your dog is VaccinatedYoung puppies are most susceptible to infectious viral diseases, but unvaccinated older and immune compromised dogs are at risk as well. A properly vaccinated dog is a must when considering attending your favourite festival, for everyone's safety!
Microchip and license your dog with the City of Calgary. Licenses need to be worn when out in public. Give yourself peace of mind, by ensuring that your dog’s information is up to date and to have a way to identify them should they become separated from you!
• ID your Dog
• Water - Keep it Cool!Remember, outdoor events can cause our pets to become overheated and dehydrated with the sun and hot asphalt. Seek shady areas and provide lots of water for your pet. Dogs too can suffer from a heat stroke. Warning signs to be on the lookout for: heavy panting, thick drool, bright red gums, vomiting, diarrhea, wobbly legs, weakness.
Unless you are in an off leash area, the City of Calgary requires all dogs in public places to be leashed. Dog harnesses can also be a great idea for the festival dog.
• Keep them Leashed!
• Ride in Style -Get a CarrierSmaller dogs are often hard to see amongst the crowds of people, and could easily be kicked or stepped on. Carriers, doggie backpacks or strollers are a great way for them to participate with their owners so they can remain safe and not be under foot. Carriers also provide the senior dog with mobility issues a chance to be part of the fun while being mobile and safe.
Even Fido can suffer from those pesky insects. Ensure you have a safe repellant for your pooch.
• Block the Bugs
Make sure to bring some of your dogs own favourite treats for your dog and to avoid tummy troubles. Be sure to be on the lookout that he or she doesn’t pick up those dropped on the ground!
• Bring on the Treats
• Scoop the Poop!No one likes to smell or step in it! Always be prepared to pick up after your pet to ensure everyone can have a good time and to be a responsible pet owner. Don’t forget those poop bags!
By Dr Dirk Dekens, DVM
Dekens Housecall Veterinary Services