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Dehydrated Fruit? Good! Dehydrated Dog? Bad

dehydrated dogIn the summer heat it is really easy for your dog to get dehydrated. Even if you keep your dog inside most of the time, dehydration can just sneak up on us. Dehydration can be as minor as just being really thirsty and a little lethargic to causing death. So make sure you know the signs and know what to do.

What is Dehydration?

It is simply fluid levels dropping to less than normal. This can be caused by a reduced water intake or from vomiting and diarrhea.

Symptoms of Dehydration

  • Sunken eyes
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dry mouth
  • Depression

Dehydration Test

The easiest way to test your pets hydration is to check their skin. Lift the skin between their should blades. Pinch it between your fingers and lift it up, then let it go. If the skin immediately goes down flat and returns to normal, your dog is hydrated. If it does not return to normal and takes a long time to go back down, your pet is dehydrated.

This is not the only test and it does not test for the severity of dehydration. However, it is a good initial at-home assessment.

What to do

Call you vet immediately! If you have done the skin test and you think your pet is dehydrated you need to call your vet and give your pet some water  right away. When you call let your vet know if your pet is drinking and how are they drinking the water. Are they lapping up as much as they can and can’t seem to get enough? Are they not interested in the water? Did they have a little bit but turned away? All of these behaviors can help your vet decide if you need to bring your pet in for treatment.

Treating Dehydration

The primary goal for treating dehydration is to get fluids back into the body. This may be by just giving your pet fresh clean water. It may involve subcutaneous (under the skin) water injections, or in more serious cases, IV fluids. If your dog has been throwing up or having diarrhea then something else may be going that needs treatment in addition to the dehydration.

Prevent Dehydration

  • Provide clean water at all times
  • Change your pets water frequently to ensure freshness
  • Wash your pet’s water bowl daily to prevent bacteria from forming, which can lead to other illness
  • Monitor your dog’s water intake. Generally, a dog needs at least one ounce of water for each pound of body weight per day. If your dog is not drinking an adequate amount of water, seek veterinary advice.
  • Purchase a water bowl with a weighted bottom to prevent your dog from knocking it over.
  • Bring extra water when you’re traveling or exercising with your dog.
  • If you notice your pet is drinking less than usual, check his mouth for sores or other foreign objects, such as burrs or sticks.
  • Avoid chaining a dog outside, since he may get tangled up, preventing him from accessing his water bowl.
  • Avoid keeping your dog in hot places, like your garage or backyard.
  • Keep your toilet lid closed to interrupt your dog’s attempts at drinking from the toilet. This can be a source of bacteria which can cause other illness.

5 Household Cleaners That Are Toxic To Your Dog

Cleaning products that are toxic to dogsCleaning your home is important, but it’s also important that you use cleaners that will not harm you or your dog. While some household chemicals and cleaning products are safe, there are others that are extremely toxic and can cause serious harm, or even death, to your pets.

If you have dogs in your home, you may want to avoid using the following household cleaners and products, as they are extremely dangerous to your pet’s health.

1. Chlorine

While you may not break out a bottle of chlorine to clean your home, you do break out other products that contain chlorine as a main ingredient. All-purpose cleaners, toilet bowl cleaners, laundry detergent and dishwashing detergents all contain chlorine as a main ingredient. If you’re using a product that contains chlorine, your dog could suffer serious harm. Chlorine can irritate your dog’s skin and eyes. If you use products that contain chlorine, the vapors left behind can make their way to the ground level where your pets reside, and if they inhale the vapors or lick an area with residue left behind, it could cause them to become sick.

2. Toilet Bowl Cleaners

Along with chlorine, some toilet bowl cleaners contain other harmful chemicals that can cause irritation or illness to your pet. If your dog has a habit of drinking toilet bowl water, they could be ingesting chlorine and other chemicals, which could give them diarrhea, force them to vomit or even result in seizures. Make sure to use a safe and non toxic toilet bowl cleaner, and always be sure to put the lid down to keep your dog from getting into the toilet water.

3. Ammonia

Many people use ammonia to clean their homes, and while it may be effective at cleaning messes and killing bacteria, it’s extremely dangerous to your dog’s health. Even if you don’t use ammonia, it can be found in most oven and glass cleaners, and if your dog were to inhale the ammonia or consume any left-behind residue, it could cause serious damage to their nose, throat and stomach.

4. Drain Cleaners

If you have a clogged drain, you want to make sure your dog is not around when you use common products like Drano. Drain cleaners give off intense fumes that can be extremely harmful to your pet, causing them to become disoriented. Instead, you want to make sure that you use a non toxic solution to remove residue and build up from clogged drains.

5. Laundry Detergent

As mentioned above, some laundry detergents contain chlorine, which can be dangerous to your dog. But laundry detergents also contain other chemicals that can irritate your dog’s skin or even give them an upset stomach if they were to chew on a bed or blanket cleaned with that detergent. When it comes to washing items your dog will use, it’s always best to choose a detergent that is free of all dyes and chemicals.

Having a clean home may be important, but having a healthy pet is even more important. Make sure that you go through your household chemicals and check the ingredients. Replace any toxic or dangerous products with safer non toxic alternatives to give you a clean house and a healthy pooch.


Danielle Nottingham is a blogger for www.DogTrainingCollars.com who often gives safety and health tips to pet owners.

Tips on Keeping you Pets Safe while In The Garage During Summer

keeping your dog in a garageKeeping pets in the garage is not typically thought of as a responsible thing to do and we don’t recommend it. In the summertime, this is especially true. Keeping your pets in the garage during the heat of the summer in desperate conditions is animal cruelty. However, there are times when we can’t keep them in the house and it is too hot, or not suitable, to stay outside. Before putting them in the garage, you should consider short term boarding. But, if you have to keep your dog in the garage you need to make sure they are safe.

There are ways in which you can make your garage animal friendly and a comfortable place for animals during the heat of the summer. In most case, to do this effectively you need to remake most, if not all of your garage. If you want to get your pet out of the house in the summertime, but don’t or can’t leave it outdoors, keeping it in the garage can be a good solution with the right preparation. Making your garage suitable for an animal will require a lot of work and a transformation into an animal living space.

If you don’t use your garage for much and feel that it is a lot of wasted space, converting it into a living area for your pets may be a good way to repurpose the space. The first step in doing this is to clear the garage of any harmful chemicals and substances that an animal would find and ingest. If your garage is full of chemicals and scattered with dangerous tools and substances, you might want to rethink keeping your animals there. If your garage, however, is reasonably well kept, doing some renovation and reorganizing may be all you need to make it pet friendly.

Always make sure the garage is well ventilated. Garages in general are stuffy, dirty, dusty places that can be death traps for animals and humans. Your pets need plenty of fresh air, so opening up the garage to air circulation is essential. Open windows or add windows to the structure. This also brightens up the garage. Your pets need sunlight as well, so consider putting in a couple extra windows on various sides of the garage for better lighting. Since you probably don’t want to give your pets free reign of the entire garage, you will need to construct a space for them. Allocate a portion of the garage away from anything they could get into and cordon off the area. At this point, the pets you’re keeping here are most likely going to be dogs, so for the sake of simplicity, assume that dogs are the ‘pets’. Putting in or building a dog pen is the best way to keep a dog in the garage. Make sure the gates are high enough that they can’t jump over and that the latch is secure.

Ideally, place the pen near a window so your dog gets plenty of fresh air and sunlight. If your garage is big enough and you want to allocate a sizeable portion of it to your pet, build a perimeter in the garage to give your dog room to run around. Having a dedicated area where your pet can move around freely without concerns about destroying things is a great relief when you’re away during the day. Keeping your pets in the garage can be perfect for this. Always put the pet’s cage or house within the pen with toys and water. As long as there is good ventilation in a clean, safe place, a garage is usually a fine place to keep your pet when you’re away. During the summer, you may consider running a fan to keep the air circulating and cool. Dogs can easily become overheated and a garage can be a stuffy, hot place, so make sure you have a means to keep your pet cool and comfortable.

The New Mexico heat can be a killer! Make sure you put a thermometer in your garage so you know how hot it is. If you are going to keep your pet in there regularly, you should consider regulating the temperature with an evaporative cooler or window AC unit. Sometimes a fan is not enough to keep your garage cool. So make sure you know hot hot it gets in there before you leave you dog all day.

If your dog has any signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion, make sure to call your vet immediately! Its not just our green chile that is hot!

By +Ben Vaughn

Ben Vaughn writes on garage doors Salt Lake City, tips for keeping pets in garages, and converting your garage into a living space.

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The information provided on this website is written by Vetco staff. All information is meant to be informational and is not meant as veterinary advice. If you have a health question regarding your pet, their treatment or anything concerning their veterinary care, please call Vetco to consult with a veterinarian.