Hello to my doggy Pack! I hope you and your loved ones are staying safe and healthy. And of course, that would include your dog. As the weather gets hot, be careful about walking your dog on the hot pavement. To tell if the pavement is too hot for your dog’s paws, but your hand on the pavement and if it is too hot for your hand to touch, it is too hot for your dog’s paws to touch. You may want to carry your dog to a patch of grass, or put down some doggy pee pee pads in your house.
Each summer there are so many lost dogs that turn up in the shelters. PLEASE microchip your dog, so that if your dog gets out and winds up at a shelter they will check to see if it is chipped and you will have a happy reunion. Also, many people who find dogs will also bring it to a vet. Again, the first thing the vet, shelter or rescue organization will do is check for a microchip. It is not expensive and WELL worth it.
Another suggestion is that you put a tag on your dog’s collar with it’s name and your phone number. That way if your dog gets lost and a person finds your dog, it is easy for them to contact you directly. This actually happened to me last summer…I was at a party at a friend’s house when I noticed this cute dog hanging around. I asked whose dog it was and no one claimed it. Hmmmm. So I looked at the dog’s tag and it had a phone number. I called it and the people were SOOO relieved. The dog had gotten out through a loose gate and while the dog had wandered into this party and was enjoying himself, his owners were frantic and running up and down the streets trying to find him. I asked them to text me a photo of the dog and when it was a match I gave them the address where I was, and a few minutes later the dog and his very relieved owners were happily reunited. Had that dog not had a tag with a phone number, it would have been a very different outcome.
With many of us hanging out in our backyards this summer, it is often easy for a dog to chase a squirrel out of your yard and not stop until he is lost, or to run after something interesting. Be aware of your gates and keep your dogs on a long leash. (You can find 30 feet leashes so the dog will feel she is free, but you know she is safe.) With COVID-19 to worry about we need to find comfort in our dogs and not have them as further reasons to stress. A little preventatvie action can save you tons of potential heartache. And be sure to keep plenty of water available for your dog in the hot summer months. And many dogs love kiddy pools or sprinklers as a great way to have fun and keep cool. Take good care of your dog because they sure do take good care of you!
Lastly, I want to reiterate some information I shared in my last blog because it has come to my attention that many people have been giving up their dogs for fear that they could get the coronavirus from their dog. That is NOT TRUE! There have been cases where the dog caught the virus from an infected human family member, but their symptoms were mild and they recovered easily. There have been NO CASES where a dog gave COVID-19 to a human. It seems that in certain circumstances, people can spread the virus to animals, but there is currently NO EVIDENCE that it can spread from animals to humans.
If you are showing signs, symptoms or are sick with COVID-19 isolate not only from your other human family members in your household, but also (sadly) from your pet as well. If possible, have others care for your dog at this time. If that is not an option, wash your hands vigorously before touching, playing with, or feeding your dog. Don’t let your dog lick you. Refrain from cuddling with your dog and even petting your dog at this time because you could get the virus on the dog’s fur and inadvertently spread the virus that way. Do not hand feed your dog treats, or share your table scraps. Put the dog’s food in its bowl directly from the bag, and be sure the dog has fresh, clean water at all times. It is also a good idea to wear a mask around your dog to be safe. And be sure to cough or sneeze into your arm/elbow – not anywhere near your dog!
- Avoid letting your dog lick you in the face.
- Do not share your table scraps with your dog.
- Disinfect and clean your dog’s toys, food and water bowls with a pet-safe cleaner.
- Be sure to include your dog’s needs in your family’s preparedness plan. (For example, have extra dog food and water, and any medications you dog may be taking.)
- Wipe your dog’s paws with paw wipes after walks outside.
- Practice good hygiene around your pets and wash your hands before handling your dog or giving your dog a bone, treats or toys.
- Exercise – especially outdoors, is good for both you and your dog. It boosts your immune system and keeps you both from going stir crazy!
- Laughter and play are good for the soul.
- Remember that your dog can feel your stress, so take care of yourself: focus on positive things, what you are grateful for, and all of your blessings.
- Wash your hands often while singing one of the following:
- How Much is that Doggy in the Window
- Who Let the Dogs Out
- Puppy Love