Autumn Hazards – Keep pets safe this season

As autumn approaches, the weather begins to change, as well as the needs and behaviors of our pets. As we prepare for a new season, we should make sure that our pets are prepared as well. In an effort to minimize risks, knowing more about autumn hazards and preventive measures will help keep your pets safe. Below are some hazards to watch out for this fall:

Back-to-School Time

During the summer, your children and the family pet can develop a strong bond. Now there’s suddenly an empty and quiet house. This change in routine can cause your pet to suffer from separation anxiety. Your pet may experience the effects of the loss by exhibiting signs of separation through destructive behaviours, such as:

  • Chewing furniture
  • Ripping the stuffing out of pillows
  • Shredding paper
  • Obsessive barking/whining/meowing for extended periods of time
  • House soiling

Never punish your pets for exhibiting this behavior, as it will make them more fearful and potentially aggressive.

Exercise

Many dog owners will walk their dog or exercise with their dog in the morning, before the sun is up, or in the evening or night, when the sun has gone down.  Make sure your dogs are kept dry when walking, ideally a waterproof reflective coats. It’s so important to make sure your pet is microchipped and remember to keep contact details up to date. The reduced visibility in autumn makes it harder for dogs to see or be seen on sidewalks and roads if somehow they escape from a leash.

Fallen Fruit:

Apples, apricots, plums and other fruits have pits or seeds that can cause intestinal irritation or blockage. If eaten, rotting fruit can also cause gastroenteritis. Please do prevent your pet from accessing fallen fruit, leaves, conkers etc.

Allergies

Autumn can bring about a whole new set of allergies. Blooming weeds and dust are two big aggravates. Look for signs like scratching, biting, chewing, sneezing, coughing, watery eyes, hives and rashes. As we turn the heaters on, dust and dry air can cause skin and upper respiratory irritation.

Seasonal Parasites

Autumn is one of our pet’s favorite times of the year despite the weather getting colder. Unfortunately parasites do not take holidays and are a major problem at this time of the year. The reason is that with the mild weather, and cool nights, conditions are perfect for parasite eggs to last much longer in the environment. Fleas are seeking heat which can make life miserable for you and your pets. Ticks are particularly active this time of the year, living in long grass and woodland areas. Harvest mites are active in long grass in the autumn time, swarming onto passing pets where they tend to congregate on the ears, eyelids, feet and under the abdomen. They are easily identified as bright orange dots. Autumn is definitely not the time of the year to be lacking on a guard again parasites, make sure and keep your pets protected.

Mushrooms

It is the mushroom season and all mushrooms are toxic to dogs. Always watch for mushrooms in areas where you walk your dogs or where they run and play. Be especially cautious of parasol-shaped mushrooms and all small brown mushrooms. Symptoms of mushroom poisoning can range from mild vomiting and diarrhea to severe digestive problems to complete liver failure.