Patty L. Fletcher
Hello again Word Matters Readers!
Patty and Seeing Eye Dog Campbell Lee back with some tips and tricks for keeping your animal whether it be a Dog Guide from The Seeing Eye or a Purrfectly Precious Pet safe from the hot weather during the last and what can be for some, hottest month of summer.
Let’s talk about animals that live outside first, as they are always those at highest risk. Animals living outside no matter the type need the following items to live safely during the hot whether…
• Fresh water and food accessible at all times.
• Shelter from the elements accessible at all times. (Especially if they’re to be left unattended for any length of time) Animals that live inside need these things as well, but the two most important ones for them are…
• Fresh water and food accessible at all times
• Adequate shelter when left outside to do their business.
The weather can change at a moment’s notice in the summer months and no one wants their animals to be in a dangerous storm with no place to go.
The next thing to remember is what your animals will need if you are on the go. Since Campbell is a Seeing Eye Dog and travels with me everywhere I go these are the items I carry most often…
• A bottle of water, and collapsible bowl.
• A towel for wetting so I can rub his fur down should he become over heated or if we have to wait in an area where there is no shade.
• Food if we’re going to be out at feed time. Animals require routine so even if your animals are not service animals try not to forget they get hungry just like you, and they do much better if they have their own food. Not! Yours!
If you’re a walker like me, and are worried about your dog’s paws being burned by hot pavement there are a couple of good options for you other than just staying home.
One option is to buy specially made booties for their paws. You can get them in all sizes. Just check out your local pet store, or online pet supply shop and you should be able to find what you need.
It has been my personal experience that for the most part you spend more time putting the booties on the dog and trying to convince them that wearing them is a good idea than you do getting anywhere once they’re on. So my pick is option # 2, and that is to use a product most people think of only in the winter. Musher’s Secret is a wonderful thing. It is applied directly to the pad of the paw and acts as a barrier between the hot road and your dog’s feet. The dog cannot remove it like it can the booties so there’s no lost shoes to contend with and other than being inconvenienced by having it rubbed on the dog is not bothered by it.
The last and certainly not the least important thing to remember is this…
DO NOT LEAVE YOUR ANIMAL IN A CAR UNATTENDED!!!
Even with the windows rolled down, and the car parked in the shade, it becomes a death trap for your animal because temperatures inside can reach as much as #110 degree F as quickly as #10 minutes flat. So if the animal cannot go inside please? Just leave it at home.
Campbell and I are looking forward to the Labor Day weekend, and we know that is the last big deal before autumn sets in, but we encourage you to remember these hot weather tips and tricks, because even though the summer vacation time is over, the hot weather is here for a bit longer. Let us all work to keep all animals as safe as we can.
Until next time, this is Patty and Seeing Eye Dog Campbell Lee saying…
May harmony find you, and blessid be.
Patty L. Fletcher lives in Kingsport, TN, where she is a nonprofit consultant, the creator of The Neighborhood News, and writes full time.
Her autobiographical book is Campbell’s Rambles: How a Seeing Eye Dog Retrieved My Life (C 2014). There, she tells how she obtained her first guide dog from The Seeing Eye® in Morristown, NJ: what motivated her, the extensive training she had, and the good friends she made.
For more details about her and her book, including where to purchase the book in e-book or print format go to: www.dvorkin.com/pattyfletcher/
To see her blog and newly updated website go to http://campbellsworld.wordpress.com/