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First Aid Tips to Keep Dogs Safe Outside

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IOWA  —  Pets are often considered to be part of the family, so it only makes sense that owners would want to take care of them as well as possible.

As animals are starting to spend more time outside during the summer, the DNR has released some helpful hints on ways to make sure dogs stay safe while enjoying the great outdoors.

The first thing the DNR suggests doing is creating a first aid kit that includes your pet’s medical records and a photo of the animal, as well as supplies like an extra leash, bandages, gauze, hydrogen peroxide, tweezers, and the phone numbers for a veterinary clinic and the Animal Poison Control Center.

Dogs’ paw pads are pretty strong, but the summer heat can burn them as they walk on hot pavement. Rinsing the dog’s feet in cool water and applying a bandage is a good first step, but be sure to remove any tar from their feet first–using peanut butter is a good way to get it all off!

Make sure to keep your animals hydrated and not out in the heat for too long. The DNR says you can pinch the skin behind the dog’s shoulder blades to test whether your pooch is hydrated; if the skin goes right back into place then they’re good to go, but otherwise they’ll need some more water over the course of a few hours.

The DNR also says these tips don’t take the place of professional veterinary care, so if the situation seems serious, be sure to bring your pets in to see a doctor.