Pet-Prep Tips You Need to Know For Summer

These tips will earn you a tail wag or two.

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From layering on SPF and chugging water to calling it quits and heading inside to cool off, people know their limits and the proper precautions to take when temperatures start soaring. As simple as it is for people to care for themselves, it's not so easy for our furry friends. As pet owners, we must take responsibility for our companions and protect them from the potential threats that come with the hot, humid months. Keep these tips in mind for wagging tails, appreciative purrs and sloppy kisses all summer long.

Hot + Sticky

Adirondack-style Swing

Adirondack-style Swing

Garden swings can be pet-friendly spots, too. In this outdoor space, a slate pathway leads to an Adirondack-style swing made of southern yellow pine by Uwharrie Chair Co.

Photo by: Uwharrie Chair Co.

Uwharrie Chair Co.

Heat and humidity are huge threats for animals, and it's paramount that pet owners treat them as such. The Humane Society emphasizes that owners should never, under any circumstances, leave their pets in a parked car. "Not even for one minute. Not even when the car is running and the air conditioner is on." Temperatures rise to dangerous levels rapidly during the summer months. If you're considering bringing your pet along for a ride as a co-pilot while running errands, think again. Leave your furry friend at home with the AC and some cool water to drink, and look forward to their excitement upon your return. Distance does makes the heart grow fonder, right?

Keep Them Cool

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TxPhotoChic

Luckily, there are many ways for owners to combat the temperatures and keep their pets safe. Our tried-and-true frozen peanut butter and jelly treat recipe is an effective and tasty way to keep dogs safe on a sweltering summer day. Be sure to provide a fresh supply of cool water and ice cubes while you're at it.

Provide Proper Shade

Pet Reh says they pay careful attention to a dog’s personality and their needs before tackling a project. This Seattle pup enjoys the shade in her garden that was designed with her in mind by Dennis Hopkins of Northwest Botanicals.

Photo by: Bed Bath & Beyond

Bed Bath & Beyond

Protect pets from the sun by ensuring they have plenty of shaded spots to relax during playtime. That said, the Humane Society warns that not all shade is created equal. The "shade" offered by a doghouse poses a dangerous threat to dogs, as doghouses trap heat inside. Avoid any danger and, instead, opt for shade provided by trees or tarps. This allows for breezy air ventilation and will keep your companion cool and content on warm afternoons.

Flea + Tick Prevention

Dog and Cat Staring Into a Pond

Dog and Cat Staring Into a Pond

Visit the vineyards, stay at the inn at Abeja outside Walla Walla.

The word that comes to mind when I think of fleas and ticks? Yuck. Fleas and ticks are yuck indeed, but they're very common for cats and dogs exposed to warm, humid climates. Frequent baths, topical preventative ointments and full-body inspections are all helpful measures to protect your pet. ASPCA warns against using flea/tick prevention products intended for dogs on cats and vice-versa. Get the full run-down on these creepy crawlers from ASPCA here, and read more information on how to spot them, treat them and prevent them like a pro.

Pet-Proof Parties

Three Girls With a Dog

Three Girls With a Dog

Who doesn't love hanging out with pets during parties? Befriending the basset hound in the corner is half the fun, if you ask me. If you're throwing a summer soiree, be sure to pet-proof accordingly. ASPCA points out that many of the common snacks and sips people love are toxic for cats and dogs. Keep any boozy beverages, chocolate, grapes (or raisins) and onion-clad bites far, far away from your four-legged friends.

Fresh Summer Groom

Max loves taking the path through the perennial garden, says RMSer mccrazy4hgtv.

Keep your pup protected from the elements (and looking fierce as ever!) with a proper summer grooming routine. Not sure what that looks like? Ask your veterinarian! While some dogs benefit from a summer shave, others are much better off with bi-weekly baths and routine brushing.

Pet-Friendly Home Ideas

A stylish home that suits both you and your pets? It's totally possible.

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