Protecting Your Dog At Public Events
With the nice weather finally here, it's time for some tail-wagging outdoor events! While you and your canine companion are sure to have a great time, there are plenty of situations to pay attention to while you’re at the event.
What to Watch for and How to Prepare
You know how your dog acts around you in the comfort of home. But you need to prepare for how to handle and comfort your dog around outdoor events. Here are some things to anticipate.
Even if your dog has "never met a stranger," keep him leashed when a lot of people are around. Avoid situations that might cause agitation such as too many dogs greeting at once, or allowing strangers to pet your dog. If anyone asks to pet him, politely tell them no. If your dog has a history of anxious behaviors, we recommend using some natural calming products to help ease their stress during the event. Always be mindful of your dog's body language as it'll be your first indicator of stress, agitation, and/or anxiousness.
Dogs have sensitive hearing and don't like loud noises. In addition to keeping her in a quieter spot, try a fun distraction, such as tug-o-war with a safe toy or a tennis ball.
Dehydration during the hot summer is a serious issue for dogs. Hydrate them ahead of time before going to the event. Also bring a water bottle and small bowl. And if your dog starts panting or showing signs of exhaustion, leave immediately.
Dogs don't handle extreme heat well—they can't sweat. If you can, attend the event during the early morning or early evening hours and stick to shade. Always be mindful of the ground temperature as asphalt and concrete can get significantly hotter than the outside temperature, potentially burning your dog's paw pads.
If your dog starts panting heavily or seems lethargic, move her immediately to a cool indoor spot.
Signs of Heat Stress include:
- Excessive panting
- Increased heart rate
- Confused or disorientation
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Bright red gums
- Body temperature higher than 104 degrees Fahrenheit
- Collapse, seizure, or coma
If you feel like your dog is experiencing symptoms of heatstroke, we recommend you do the following:
- Move the dog to a shaded and cool area
- Immediately pour cool (not cold to avoid shock) water over the dog. If possible, you can also use wet towels and wipe the dog down. Never leave a wet or damp towel resting on your dog as it'll trap in their body heat and actually make them warmer
- Allow the dog to drink small amounts of cool water
- Continue to pour cool water over the dog until their breathing starts to settle, but not too much that they begin to shiver
- Once the dog is cool, take them to the nearest veterinarian as a matter of urgency
If you dog doesn’t like others of his ilk, minimize interactions. Keep him leashed and close to you.
Outdoor activities are supposed to be fun for you and your d. But it's important to take precautions to ensure enjoyment for both you and your four-legged friend. For additional information about pet care of all kinds, visit Pets on Broadway!
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