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Expert shares pet care tips for springtime

Article

Celebrate the first day of spring with these helpful cautions

 Veronika Seppanen / stock.adobe.com

Veronika Seppanen / stock.adobe.com

Happy first day of spring! As the weather gets warmer and the season changes, there are new hazards to be aware of to maintain good health. Take a look at some of these springtime tips with expert advice from Lindsay Butzer, DVM, budding social media star, and PetMeds partner. After completing veterinary school in the Caribbean Island of St. Kitts at Ross University, she went to work for her father’s small animal general practice at Clint Moore Animal Hospital in Boca Raton, Florida.

Allergies

Allergies become a more significant concern during the spring season. Keeping a close eye on your pet for signs of allergies can help tackle the issue early on rather than letting it linger and cause more damage. Dr Butzer said in a release from Butin PR,1 “Pet allergies in spring are mostly due to the hot environment mixed with our pet’s fur coats that cover their bodies causing a perfect environment for bacteria and yeast to set up shop. Keeping your pets cool and indoors if you live in hotter climates during spring will significantly decrease the number of skin issues and allergies they will have.”

Butzer also added that, “certain breeds are more prone to skin allergies such as bully breeds with excessive folds that trap moisture and heat like bulldogs, boxers, and Frenchies.” But whether or not your dog is one of these breeds, allergy prevention can be essential in maintaining healthy skin. Excessive itching is a primary sign of allergies, but it can also include sneezing and coughing, lethargy, skin irritation and even vomiting or diarrhea. Allergy shampoos are an easy option to use when giving baths, but Butzer mentioned that, “Allergy shots and pills as well as antibiotics and antifungals are also available to help your pets if the cool environments and baths aren't doing the job.”

Butzer gave dvm360® some tips for veterinary professionals to better communicate allergy prevention to clients, including:

  • Use simple language and visual aids such as infographics or videos
  • Be specific about the potential dangers and offer clear instructions on how to prevent them
  • Share personal experiences seen from previous patients
  • Offer specific solutions with recommended products
  • Follow up with clients to ensure that they have understood the information and have implemented the recommended solutions

Parasites

Warmer weather also breeds an influx of parasites like fleas and ticks. Butzer told dvm360, “Fleas, ticks, and other insects become more active as we emerge from winter and temperatures rise, which increases the risk of flea bites, infestation, and disease transmission.”

Like allergies, a main sign of flea bites is excessive itching. However, some others to look out for include redness or bumps on the skin. Once you suspect fleas are in your home it’s crucial to eradicate them as soon as possible before they lay eggs.

Rising temperatures

As the temperatures rise, outdoor activities become more fun and frequent. However, it is also important to be aware of heat stroke when the temperature jumps unexpectedly. According to Butzer, bulldogs, Shih Tzus, pugs, Pekingeses, and any other squished-faced breeds are more at risk of heat stroke due to their increased breathing issues. Staying on top of heat stroke prevention in the spring can help better prepare you for increased temperatures in the summer.

Reference

TikTok vet shares springtime pet care tips. News release. Butin PR. Published March 7, 2023. Accessed March 17, 2023.

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