Veterinarian Jim Osman and vet nurse Cath Shayler get ready to zinc-up border collie Banjo.
Veterinarian Jim Osman and vet nurse Cath Shayler get ready to zinc-up border collie Banjo. ROB WRIGHT

Take care of dogs during summer

WHILE we are rejoicing now that summer is finally here, our favourite furry friends aren’t so happy.

Summer is a busy time for vets and can be an unbearable time for dogs – they don’t call them the Dog Days of Summer for nothing.

The adage refers to the 40 days of muggy, stagnant weather which coincide with the appearance of Sirius, the Dog Star, which normally occurs between January and March.

Dogs NSW is suggesting a number of ways to make your dog more comfortable this summer.

These include putting zinc on unpigmented skin during periods of sun exposure, to protect your pet from sunburn, as well as keeping your dogs safe and secure during summer storms.

Local veterinarian Jim Osman urged owners to patch test their dog with the zinc first, just in case your furry friend is allergic to a particular brand.

“Put a small amount on to make sure they don’t react and then use the same brand. This is especially important for unpigmented skin,” he said.

“During storms keep your dog contained somewhere dark and quiet, where they can hide and feel secure and preferably where they can’t feel the vibrations.”

Mr Osman said heatstroke can prove fatal when people walk their pets in the hottest part of the day and particularly when dogs get left in cars.

“You should never under any circumstances leave your dog unattended in a car,” he said.

“It only takes five or 10 minutes and you can lose them even if there’s a window down.

“We had a staffy that died last year after its owners left it in the car at the Plaza.”



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