The lazy, hazy days of summer may be drawing to a close, but it’s never too late for cat owners to get a refresher in how to keep their four-legged friends safe. Whether you have an indoor or outdoor cat, the summer months can mean added dangers that shouldn’t be overlooked. Here are a few tips on what to look out for as we close out summer 2015:
Pool chemicals. While your cat may be less likely to take a dip in the pool than a dog, the chemicals used in pools can still pose a threat. This overview of the variety of pool chemicals and how they’re used gives an indication of how toxic they can be. If your cat loves to roam outdoors, make sure pool and other chemicals are kept in a locked storage area that your cat will not be able to access. If you suspect your cat has been exposed to these chemicals, call your vet immediately.
Other animals. Other animals, including cats and wildlife, will want to be outdoors enjoying the warm temperatures just as much as your cat. But be aware that some of these animals may be carrying bacteria that could be very harmful to your cat. As International Cat Care notes, by coming in contact with other animals—such as “deer, badgers, ferrets, dogs and cats”—your cat can become infected with the bacteria that causes tuberculosis. The organization notes that signs that your cat has been infected may include diarrhea and other intestinal issues or non-healing wounds (if the disease was contracted via a bite). If you’re going to let your cat roam, make sure you can keep an eye on them and that they stay in an enclosed area.
Hot temperatures. Last year, August was the hottest month on record. And chances are temperatures will spike in August 2015. Your feline may need a little assistance staying cool. Catster.com provides a couple of tips that are quick and easy ways to help your cat cool off. First, they recommend putting ice cubes in your cat’s water. And second, they suggest freezing water in a plastic bottle to place in your cat’s “favorite lounging spot.”
Dehydration. You hear a ton in the summer about how important it is that humans stay hydrated, however you don’t hear much about pets and hydration. But they are just as susceptible, if not more so, as we humans. CatBehaviorAssociates.com explains that you can help your cat stay hydrated by making sure the water is appealing to them. The best way to do that is to change it frequently to keep it fresh.
There’s no reason your cat shouldn’t enjoy these last weeks of summer to the fullest. But cat owners should take steps to avoid possible dangers. Knowing what to look out for and how to take action will help keep your cat happy and healthy.
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Guest author/blogger: Vee Cecil is a Kentucky-based wellness coach, personal trainer, and bootcamp instructor. She is passionate about studying and sharing her findings in wellness through her recently-launched blog.