Summer can be a very dangerous time of year for animals, especially for cats. Some cats cannot handle the heat (this shouldn’t be such a surprise considering some of us adults can’t really handle the kind of heat that summer so often brings with it anymore). Some cats are not as well equipped to handle the kind of heat that happens throughout the type of year in many places, and it’s for various reasons. For example, some cats are simply not built to do well in hot weather. Cats with very long coats and thick fur are often built to withstand very cold temperatures, but they suffer significantly in the heat. It’s just one of those things that is not always appropriate when it comes time to handling the way your cat lives in the summer. So many of us spend a great deal of time protecting ourselves and our kids from harsh summer weather that we often forget our cats need just as much protection to keep them happy and safe when temperatures rise. This means we feel a bit compelled to share with you a few of the most important things you can do to keep your cats healthy and safe in the midst of the hottest time of year.
Protecting Cats Outside
Don’t leave cats in the car, ever. If you have to take the cat to the vet or on vacation or whatever, don’t stop and leave the cat in the car for even a few minutes while you run into a store and pick things up. It’s not safe; it’s entirely too dangerous to do this.
Use insect repellent that’s pet-friendly. Your cat needs to have some sort of repellent if it is outside or even on a porch. There are so many dangerous bugs and insects out this time of year that have to be watched, and we have to do our best to keep things under control.
Don’t allow cats near azalea bushes since they are potentially deadly. Cats aren’t always going to ingest this kind of flower, which is good. But if they do, it can kill them so keep them away.
Additionally, keep the cats away from lilies as well. Lilies are potentially harmful to the health of your pets, too, so go ahead and keep them away from the plants that are in your yard to keep your cat as safe as possible.
Steer clear of pets near fireworks. Summer is big on fireworks, but you should not let your cat out when you are setting them off. It could be very dangerous and even deadly.
Protecting Cats Around the House
Keep the garage closed. There are many things in the garage that could make your cat sick, such as plant food and repellent. Keep the garage closed and the cat out for good.
Don’t let cats out after you use weed control in the garden this spring. This is always important, but many people forget that they should not let cats out in this kind of mess. Your cat needs to be kept away after you spray for weeds for at least a day.
Keep a close watch on your cat’s diet. Your cat might seem to eat a bit more during the summer from all the playing and enjoyment, but don’t let your cat eat too much or he or she could become very sick and potentially very ill.
Don’t skip any vet appointments. It’s more important than ever to keep any scheduled vet appointments for your cat this time of year. It’s your job to keep your cat as safe as possible to ensure good health, and we are here to tell you that skipping appointments this time of year could be dangerous.
Turn on the air conditioner. Your cat needs to be kept cool. Many people make the mistake of turning up the air to a disgustingly warm temperature during the day when they are not home in hopes that they can keep their utility costs down, but it really only makes the cat hotter than it needs to be.
Keep water bowls filled with fresh water. Your cat can very easily suffer from heat stroke and other health issues this time of year, and that means you need to do your best to ensure that your cat is not dehydrated, which can make it more likely to suffer from this issue.
Keep cats out of the water in lakes and ponds. Cats aren’t overly friendly when it comes to water in the first place, but some cats do like to swim. If you are near water that has a lot of algae or even a green tint to it, be sure to keep your cats away. This could cause your cat to become very sick, and it’s not always something that can be handled by the vet. This kind of algae is potentially toxic to cats, so please be very careful.
Talk to your vet about medication to fight hookworm and other parasites. It’s more likely that your cat will suffer from this health issue during the summer as it spends time in the great outdoors, and it’s very important that you take the time to ensure that your cat is protected from these issues with medication from your vet. Talk to the vet and make an appointment now for preventative measures.
Get some pet sun block and put it on your cat if he or she is going to be exposed to the sun. I bet you didn’t know that skin cancer is the second most common type of cancer in cats, and they are just as prone to it from over-exposure to the sun as the rest of us.
Don’t cut your cat’s hair. It might seem like it would make more sense to keep it short in the summer, it’s not. That hair is very protective for your cat and it should not be cut short as a way to keep your cat feeling more comfortable in the hot summer months.
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