Outdoor safety and your pet is an important part of keeping your pet healthy and happy.

“Summertime, and the livin’ is easy…”
Who can resist all the wonderful outdoor activities this time of year? There are so many fun opportunities for exercise, socializing, and rest and relaxation! The benefits increase tenfold when we’re able to share the great outdoors with our pet family members.

Like most things that involve our animal companions, outdoor safety and your pet is a topic that deserves close attention. Oakhurst Veterinary Hospital has some key pointers to help you prepare for summer fun in New Jersey with your favorite furry pal.

Gear up!

Before embarking on your favorite outdoor activities, there are some basic needs you must cover to keep your pet safe. The leash is everything when it comes to being outside with your pet. Not only is it essential for safety, but it’s also required in most public places. Find a quality leash (no longer than 6 feet) along with a collar and ID tag.

A word to the wise about leashes: avoid the retractable ones, as these have been known to cause serious injury to both pets and people.

Some other things to consider when it comes to outdoor safety and your pet:  

  • Pet formulated sunscreen
  • Doggie booties (protect those paws!)
  • Collapsible bowls
  • Disposable waste bags
  • Dog pack (if you’re hiking and your pet is able to carry some of their own stuff)
  • Pet life jacket
  • Pet first aid kit

When spending time outdoors with your pet, be sure to avoid the hottest times of the day. Never walk your dog on hot surfaces (check with your palm), and know the signs of heatstroke.

Walking Etiquette

From quaint neighborhoods to the boardwalks, there are so many places to walk your dog in the Oakhurst area. Just be sure to keep your dog leashed. Although some dogs are responsive to commands, we still recommend keeping your pet leashed for the safety of everyone. If you haven’t loose leash trained your pet, now is a great time to do so.

Also, make sure to bring along plenty of water for drinking and ample bags for picking up the poo!

On the Water

Suit up those life jackets! Whether you’re on a boat or swimming along the shoreline, your pet needs a well-fitting life jacket. Remember, even the best swimmers can run into danger. Be sure to stay in areas where you and your dog can swim together. Avoid choppy, windy days.

Boating is an awesome way for families and their pets to enjoy summertime. Just make sure there’s plenty of shade for your pet, clean drinking water, and an easy way for them to get in and out of the water. Consider a ramp for pets or a harness with a handle for easy hoisting.


If your idea of relaxation is spending a few nights under the stars, we understand! Camping is an amazing way to rejuvenate, and many dogs love the experience of being outdoors with their people. Just be sure to keep the following safety tips in mind:

  • Make sure the campground is pet friendly, and always stick to the rules regarding pets.
  • Keep your pet leashed while hiking and on a tie-out when at camp.
  • Avoid wildlife, and do not let your pet investigate any wild animals.
  • Bring your pet in the tent or in the car at night never leave them outside.

Outdoor Safety and Your Pet

Last but not least, make sure to check with us about your pet’s vaccination and parasite prevention needs. Your pet can be exposed to many illnesses and parasites when outdoors.

If you’d like additional tips about outdoor activities and your pet, please contact us. Enjoy!