eterinarians | Sully Animal Hospital, Centreville, Pet Safety Tips,

Sully Animal Hospital

5095 Westfields Blvd
Centreville, VA 20120


Warm Weather & Travel Pet Safety Tips

Sully Animal Hospital wants you and your four-legged family member to have a fun, relaxing, and safe Summer. While kicking off the start of your summer with backyard barbecues, get-togethers, summer getaways, and beach trips, keep in mind that it's important to plan ahead for your pet. The added stimuli of being around guests can also put your dog in potentially harmful situations. Here are some tips to help keep you four-legged family member be safe while you both enjoy the long weekends and beautiful weather.

Hot Summer days!   Means an increased risk of dehydration and Heat Stroke! Heat stroke can be deadly, even with aggressive therapy and treatment. Exercising outside is a great for you and your pet but could also be very dangerous. If the temperature plus humidity added together are greater than 150, it's too hot for your dog! For example: Temperature: 75'F, Humidity level: 80%, 75 + 80 = 155. Exercise during non-peak heat hours, very early in the morning or late in the evening. Most importantly, if you notice your dog is showing early signs of heat stroke, stop and take a break. Get your dog some water. And when in doubt, walk him home.  Always provide shade, water and never exercise them during the hottest part of the day.

Don't leave your pet in a parked vehicle alone.  On warm days, the temperature in our car can rise to 120 degrees in minutes even with the windows cracked. On a 78 degree day, for instance, temperatures in a car can reach 90 degrees in the shade and top 160 degrees if parked directly in the sun!  This can also cause heat stroke. Signs of heat stroke include: Vomiting, lethargy, excessive panting, collapse, diarrhea, progressing to bloody diarrhea, bruising, difficulty breathing, and death. If your pet is showing any of these signs do not put cold water on them, it will cause them to go into shock. Call Sully Animal Hospital @ (703) 956-6290 or Prince William Emergency Veterinary Clinic @ (703) 361-8287 immediately if your pet is showing these signs.

Insect bites or bee stings. Any insect or spider can cause problems if they bite or sting your pet. A bite or sting can cause swelling, redness, and itching. Some pets can have an allergic reaction to a sting or bite that may result in mild hives, facial swelling, vomiting, difficulty breathing or even collapse. . If your pet is showing any of these signs do not hesitate to call Sully Animal Hospital @ (703) 956-6290 or Prince William Emergency Veterinary Clinic @ (703) 361-8287.

Don't let people feed your pet. If your pet is out and about during a holiday party this summer, your guests may be tempted to sneak them a bite. It is important to keep your pet on their regular diet. New foods could not only be toxic (onions, raisins, grapes, and avocado) to them but may cause an upset stomach and digestive system (vomiting and diarrhea).

Keep your pet and garbage separate. Holiday parties and get-togethers often lead to trash bags full of bones and other unsafe item that are extremely attractive to pets. If your pet chews on real bones, especially cooked bones, which break more easily- bones and bone fragments may become lodged in their palate, esophagus, stomach, or intestines, causing pain and frequently requiring surgery. Bones can even pierce the digestive tracts and cause a serious life threatening abdominal infection called peritonitis.

Avoid insect repellents and sun screens unless they are specifically made for pets. You may think it's a good idea to keep bugs away and keep your pet safe in the sun, but these products are harmful to pets unless they are specifically for them. When ingested, it can cause your pet to be sick.

Do not allow your pet to consume alcohol. Alcohol can harm your pets mental wellbeing and respiratory system. Pets consuming alcohol can seem like a joke but it is very serious. If your pet consumes alcohol do not hesitate to call Sully Animal Hospital @ (703) 956-6290 or Prince William Emergency Veterinary Clinic @ (703) 361-8287.

Keep your pet away from any matches, lighters, lighter fluids, and citronella candles. It's a popular time for grilling this time of year and these items are toxic if ingested and could cause serious problems. If you suspect your pet has ingested any of these thing please contact Sully Animal Hospital @ (703) 956-6290 or Prince William Emergency Veterinary Clinic @ (703) 361-8287 immediately.

Provide them with a cool, quiet place to rest. It can be exhausting for your pet to keep up with all the activity of the day, so it's important to have an accessible place for them to rest. They may be disturbed by noise, so it's important that area is in a quiet place.

Keep gates and fences closed. A spooked pet dog or cat can easily hop a 6 foot fence, so save yourself the trouble of tracking down a runaway pet by closing all gates and fences and making sure they are latched. It may be a good idea to remind your guests of this as well.

Do not take your pet near any firework displays. No matter how calmly your pet is with loud noises and thunder, fireworks are considerably louder and scarier and often provoke unpredictable reactions. Even small quiet fireworks could burn your pet, who may come to close, attracted by the glittering light.

Do not use glow jewelry to decorate or play with your pet. It may look cute, but glow jewelry contains toxins your pet should not eat.

No heads hanging out the window while the vehicle is moving. Although many pets find that sticking their head out the window is the best part of the road trip, it's simply not safe. Your pet can become injured by flying debris. This should go without saying, but never travel with a pet in the back of a pickup truck.

Frequent pit stops. Always provide frequent potty and exercise breaks. Don't forget to bring a bag and pick up after your pet and make sure your pet has a leash, collar, and ID/ rabies tags.

Proper hydration. Provide your pet with fresh water. Traveling can upset your pet's stomach. Take along ice cubes, which are easier on a pets stomach than large amounts of water.

Watch the food intake. Keep feeding to a minimum during warmer weather  and travel. Make sure to keep them on their regular diet, fast food items can cause upset stomach.

Proper vehicle restraint. Be sure that your pet is properly restrained in the vehicle for their safety and yours. There are different types of restraints available like harnesses, carriers, barriers for SUV's, and car seats. Whichever method you choose to properly restrain your pet in the vehicle, be sure to make their comfort a priority.

**Friendly reminder to keep all pet ID and rabies tags on them with your current contact information and keeping them current on Frontline and Heartgard for parasite prevention. **