Fall Pet Safety
The crisp air and changing leaves signal that fall has arrived. While this season brings enjoyable activities for both humans and pets (like apple picking and hayrides), it also presents new dangers for our furry friends. To ensure their safety and well-being, follow these tips to keep your pets safe and healthy this fall season.
Update Your Walks
Days will start to get shorter in the fall, meaning fewer daylight hours for exercise. You can either adjust your pet’s walk schedule to do it in the daylight or you’ll have to walk them at night. Use reflective leashes and collars to help improve your safety on evening walks. Also, consider getting booties or balms for their paws for hot, cold, or rainy days.
Keep Them Comfortable
Fall weather can be unpredictable. One day may feel like summer and the next will be chilly. Keep an eye on the forecast to make sure your pet has everything they need for a hot or cold day. Ensure pets have warm, dry shelter at all times. Check that housing is free of drafts but provides adequate ventilation. Create a cozy space with blankets and a pet bed. Remember, dogs typically get uncomfortable in the cold when it gets lower than 45° Fahrenheit.
Update Their Vaccinations
Not only do humans catch the flu, but pets can too! Ensure your pet's vaccinations, including the canine influenza vaccine, are up-to-date. Consult your veterinarian about any additional vaccines that may be necessary based on your location and your pet's lifestyle.
Watch What They Eat
Not only do we need to be on the lookout for festive treats, but there are plants that thrive in fall of which we should be aware. While apple slices are good for dogs, they should not eat the seeds as they contain small amounts of cyanide. Mushrooms may grow in forests and yards. While some are safe, it’s better not to chance it. Contact your vet or poison control immediately if you think your pet has eaten something they shouldn’t have.
You may think that ticks are only a warm weather issue, and you would be wrong. Ticks stay active as long as the temperatures are above freezing and there is no snow. Inspect your pet thoroughly after any time outdoors and ask your vet about tick prevention products. Promptly remove any ticks you find. Read more about tick prevention here.
Keep An Eye Out for Wildlife
As the weather cools down, wildlife may become more active in search of food and shelter. Keep an eye out for encounters with wild animals, such as raccoons, skunks, and snakes, which could potentially harm your pet. Always keep your pet on a leash during walks and be cautious in unfamiliar areas. Keep your distance if you spot any creatures.
Clean Up Your Yard
While piles of colorful leaves can be tempting for your pet to play in, they can hide hidden dangers like sharp objects, insects, fruit, or even small wildlife. Ensure your yard is free of debris, and supervise your pet during outdoor activities to prevent accidents.
Prepare for Halloween
We all know that the prevalence of Halloween candy poses a risks to pets. Candy should be stored out of reach, like in a cabinet or in the refrigerator. Wrappers should never lie around the home. In addition to candy, decorations and trick-or-treaters can be a hazard. Pets might try to chew/eat on cords or decorations, or knock over candles, so keep those out of reach. If your pet wears a costume, make sure they can breathe, see, and move properly. If you have guests visiting your home, watch the pup if they have a tendency to run out of the door. Also, make sure your pet is microchipped and that your information is up to date.
The fall season is a beautiful time to enjoy the outdoors with your pets, but it's crucial to be aware of the potential hazards that come with it. By following these pet safety tips, you can ensure that your furry friends enjoy autumn, full of memorable moments and adventures. Remember that consulting your veterinarian for specific guidance tailored to your pet's needs is always a smart choice to keep them safe and sound during this season.