“A human being is part of the whole, called by us the ‘Universe.’ Our task must be … to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”~ Albert Einstein
So much for the 4th of July weekend weather prediction! During the day temperatures quickly climbed to around 100 degrees. Late afternoon, thunderheads billowed up over the mountains, indicating shower activity over the deserts. A humid and warm evening – under clear skies – set the stage for Crescenta Valley families and friends to enjoy fireworks.
While most humans enjoy summertime, our domesticated critters may suffer. First the fireworks, then comes at least three months of hot weather. Abby actually sat beside us and was mesmerized by the fireworks. We covered her ears for the really loud ones. Food association and 4th of July can go a long way to ease dogs’ fears!
We were a few weeks late this year getting Abby’s summer grooming and cut. This may help keep her cooler and alleviate fleas, but there are many more factors to consider in keeping your dog or cat safe and comfortable in the upcoming days.
During the past two weeks I have witnessed two heat-related incidents. The first was in a pet store parking lot (not in our area). Two huskies were left in a car with the windows cracked open just a few inches. By the time the owner came out with a 50 lb sack of dog food, a Good Samaritan had called the police. The dogs were okay, but their owner was screaming at the police officers for breaking her car window.
In our own neighborhood while I was outside watering (on a Tuesday), a young Chihuahua was out for a walk. Ouch! That asphalt is hot. Luckily, the owner was thankful when I mentioned her pup’s feet might be getting hot.
With these in mind I was prompted to put together a – hopefully useful – compilation of facts and tips.
Summertime for Pets
Dogs and cats sweat only through their paws and tongues, therefore they overheat quickly and are slow to cool down. This is also true for smaller pets – birds, rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs and ferrets – to name a few. So…
• Walk in the coolness of early morning or evening. Hydrate prior (both dog and people).
• Check the temperature of the walking surface. Flip flops don’t fit canines very well!
• Provide shady and cool areas for all animals. Abby stays indoors, laying on the slate entryway floor.
• Water, water everywhere! Like us, dogs don’t always drink unless there is a visible source. Besides a water dish indoors, we keep a large outdoor water bucket in the shade. Placed in a planter, any run-off water is not wasted. Ice adds a nice touch.
• Some dogs enjoy cooling down in a wading pool. Use precaution and supervision with children and pets around water.
Meteorologists are expecting cooler temps through Saturday due to a deeper marine layer. I have my doubts. Then high pressure builds over the west, bumping temperatures back up. Highs around 100 and lows in the upper 60s are predicted.
No howling wolves but instead chipping crickets will welcome the first full moon of summer on Saturday night.
Sue Kilpatrick is a
Crescenta Valley resident and
Official Skywarn Spotter for the
National Weather Service. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.