Did You Know?
July. Every American knows about The Fourth of July and some of us know about Bastille Day, too. Did you know that July is also Pet Hydration Awareness Month? It’s a great month to focus on hydration because it’s so hot and humid that hydration for both pets and people should be foremost in our minds.
Happy, Healthy, Hydrated
It seems there are a plethora of causes for each month, but pet hydration awareness is relevant to all pets and their parents. July may be the hottest month of the year and it’s important to keep our pets well-hydrated so they can stay happy and healthy.
Pet Hydration Awareness
All our pets – not just dogs who go out for walks or other activities – are susceptible to dehydration and its potentially dangerous side effects. To serve as a reminder to us, Pet Hydration Awareness Month was started in 2018. Through it, keeping your pets well during the hottest months becomes a focus that your friendly neighborhood vet – Homey Gnome Veterinary Clinic – can share with our clients’ caretakers.
Signs of Dehydration
All our pets – not just dogs who go out for walks or other activities – are susceptible to dehydration. Some signs to look out for are:
- Vomiting and/or diarrhea
- Dry nose
- Skin that’s lost elasticity
- Eyes that are sunken in
- Gums that seem dry or sticky
- Panting (dogs)
- Decrease in urine output
- Disinterest in food
If something with your pet seems off, it’s a good idea to evaluate how much water they’ve had and try to get them to drink something. If you’re concerned about them, please call so we can help determine whether they need IV hydration or other treatment.
Of course, exposure to heat and humidity increases your pet’s need for extra hydration, but there are other underlying medical conditions that may cause dehydration any time of year. These include:
- Kidney disease
- Thyroid disorder
- Gastrointestinal distress
Young pets, senior pets, and pets who are overweight are particularly vulnerable to the effects of dehydration.
It’s really important to have clean, fresh water available to your pets at all times. Whether they use a water bottle (like guinea pigs, rabbits, or other small pets), a water bowl, or a very bougie water fountain, clean, clear water is a must, especially during the hottest months of the summer. If you’re hiking or doing another outdoor activity with your dog, it’s advisable to bring a collapsible water bowl and water they’re used to drinking with you, so they stay hydrated but don’t get an upset stomach from a new water source.
In general, pets need about one ounce of water per day per pound of body weight, but that may be different depending on weather conditions and their overall health. When you visit us for regular preventive care, we’re happy to figure out how much water is best for your pet.
Homey Gnome Veterinary Clinic
For those in Oakdale, MN, and the surrounding areas, Homey Gnome Veterinary Clinic is focused on prevention and wellness as well as compassionate care for many species. If your pet seems dehydrated or needs any other TLC, call 651-202-3388 or email [email protected], where we focus on your pet’s well-being and your bond with each other.
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