3 Tips for Healthy & Happy Pets This Spring
Spring allows you more time to be outside with your pets, but take some precautions to ensure your pet stays healthy and happy.
- Being outdoors more and having windows open, can increase the chance your pet may escape. One in three pets goes missing in its lifetime. How can you ensure they will be returned home? Keep ID tags on pets (even indoor pets) always with name and phone number. You might also consider a permanent method of ID, a microchip. Your veterinarian can insert a microchip that is registered with your contact details in national databases. Vets or shelters that find a lost pet will use a scanner to read the microchip to identify the pet and owner. Microchips are not GPS or tracking devices and they only transmit information when they are read by a scanner.
- Spring also means more pets are outside looking to mate which can bring an abundance of unwanted puppies and kittens into shelters. Spaying or neutering not only prevents overpopulation but can reduce roaming, aggression and some cancers.
- Parasites are a year-round problem but increase during warmer months. Besides being an annoyance, fleas cause dermatitis, skin infections and anemia. Ticks can carry fatal Lyme disease, so always check before bringing your pet inside. Mosquitoes, which are prevalent in Alabama, can carry heartworm disease. It only takes one bite for your pet to become infected. Foot-long worms live in the heart, blood vessels and lungs of an infected pet and can be fatal. While treatment is available, prevention is safer, cheaper and more effective. There are oral, topical and even injectable prevention options available. Even indoor pets need to be protected to help them live long, healthy, happy lives.
– Jeff Falone, DVM
Valleydale Animal Clinic