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Your Jack Russell Puppy Care Checklist - Jack Russell Crazy Issue #29
May 13, 2012
Dog Days of Summer
In many parts of the world and for many of our readers, summer is quickly approaching. Summer can mean lounging poolside, hikes, shorts, ice cream cones and maybe a little tanning and hopefully some vacation. But it also means HEAT! While our human bodies can find ways to adjust to the temperature it may be a bit more difficult for our Jacks. So just as we slather on the sunscreen and seek shelter under beach umbrellas, it's equally important to take precautions for our furry friends. Too much sun can have similar effects on dogs as it does humans. Sunburn, heatstrokes and dehydration can be extremely dangerous for dogs.
Here are some tips to keep your Jack safe from the heat.
General Outside * Try adjusting your walk schedule. Earlier in the morning and later in the evening to avoid the sun at it's peak points. Try to avoid strenuous exercise or limit your time outdoors during the daylight hours. Check your local weather for heat advisories.
* Wet a bandana, wring it out and then freeze it. When you are ready for your walk, wrap it around your Jack's neck and you have an instant cooling system. Take it one step further and make one for yourself so that you and your Jack can match :-) Or, if you are less trendy, a simple spray bottle filled with water is good for cooling as well.
*Make sure you have extra water on hand, don't leave home without it! Many stores sell inflatable dog bowls that you can card with you so you can refill at fountains.
*In Arizona there is always a big fuss about the start of summer because the sidewalk is literally hot enough to fry an egg and they usually show it on the news. So keep in mind the surfaces that your pooch will be walking on. Dark asphalt absorbs the suns rays and can be excrutiating for your Jack.
*Summer time is when grass grows best which usually means that there are some potentially dangerous chemicals that your Jack could be walking on if you treat your grass or plants. Make sure you check the packaging or ask the company that provides the service how long your dog should wait before being allowed back on. Usually it's about a 24 hour wait period.
*Ticks Ticks Ticks! Remember to actively check your Jack for ticks (read our last newsletter about why this is so important and the best way to pull them out).
*This should go without saying but don't leave your dog in the car for extended period of time or better yet, leave your Jack at home if you plan on running errands. A completely closed car is like an oven! Even with the windows cracked the temperature rises very quickly.
The Beach *Who doesn't love the beach, especially dogs! Make sure you have a shady place for your Jack to rest and plenty of non sea water (salt water can make a dog sick).
*Just because you are beach body ready doesn't mean that your Jack is. Running on sand can be strenuous for dogs who are out of shape and can even pull muscles in dogs who overdo it.
*Sunscreen. Yes, sunscreen. I had never thought about that until a fellow dog lover clued me in. Especially for white short haired dogs .....aka many of our beloved Jacks. Most pet stores or Amazon should sell a spray variety that make it easy to apply for dogs.
*Wash your dog down to get all of the salt and minerals since they can be damaging to his coat.
*If you are boating, consider having a life jacket for your dog. Curious dogs can jump aboard and then have trouble staying afloat.
The Pool *Don't assume that your dog is a natural swimmer. Not all of them are, contraty to popular belief. So make sure you keep an eye on them if they are in the pool with you.
*Never throw a dog into water!
*Put a cone or a visable marker where the stairs are so that your Jack knows how to get out. If a dog can't find his way out he might get frightened and overexert himself looking for the exit.
*Trying to coax your Jack into the pool? Get some high value treats and try to coax him in slowly. Don't force him in. Slow and steady usually wins the race.
I hope these tips start you and your Jack off to a happy and healthy summer!
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'Til Next Time...
Take care - and take care of your JRT!
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