Warning: Watch your dog for excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. These are all symptoms of overheating according to Dr. Lila Miller, ASPCA Vice President of Veterinary Outreach. More severe symptoms can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature. If you suspect your pet is suffering from overheating, break up the buddy walking and take him/her to the vet immediately.
Don’t forget the summer bling! Lots of canines keep up on fashionable trends, as do fellow walkers. Bandanas are always trendy. Nothing catches the eye like a spotted or black-furred mutt sporting the red bandana. Or go with this year’s chic neon green, especially good on the chocolate or tan coated. Walmart stocks a dozen or more colors of bandanas in their women’s accessories department; for retro navy and red, try the men’s department near the socks. Bows are always adorable on the teacup and mini set – boy or girl, fresh grooming topped by a cute ribbon is always fetching. Coordinating you and your walking buddy dogs is extremely trendy.
Speaking of fetching, remember to choose your dog’s toys carefully. Though tennis balls are popular, they can be dangerous. Hard balls chosen specifically for the size of your dog are a much better choice. Tragedy lies in balls that can block the air pipe or be torn into edible, dangerous sizes. Occasionally take along a ropey tug-of-war toy, good to use during lay down rest time with you and in more active play with you or a doggy buddy. All of you with the nationally ranked Ultimate Frisbee pup players know to take along the current fave in disks. Try to avoid taking your dog’s very favorite, play-alone toy. Possessiveness never goes down well on buddy play dates. If you’ve got some extra bucks saved by your stay-cation, spring for a toy for your and your walking buddy’s dog. Consider the sizes of the other dogs playing with your pet, and watch out for them too.
Have the best of times with your dog walking buddies this summer!