Black cat drinking out of blue coffee cup on tableThere’s really no better time than August to think about your pet’s hydration needs. In other parts of the calendar year, they just seem to get what they need without too many worries. But these last few weeks of high heat and humidity can cause serious problems for animals. A hydrated pet is a healthy one, and we’ve got some tips and tricks to make it happen.

The Benefits of Water

A hydrated pet is at lower risk of developing a urinary tract infection, and they also have a healthier and more consistent internal body temperature. Water is cooling, maintains high energy levels, and flushes toxins from the body.

Take Notes

Do you know how much water your pet drinks every day? Or, one step further would be to know how much should they be drinking for maximum hydration. On average, the general rule is that for every 10 pounds of body weight, one cup of water is needed per day. If you spend a few days noticing that your 60 pound dog drinks less than 6 cups every day, it’s time to try out some new methods.

Change It Up

Investing in a pet drinking fountain is a great way to add more water to your pet’s routine. Most animals enjoy drinking from them, in part because they filter out any funky flavors. If they only want to drink from a bowl, keep it immaculately clean. We also recommend:

  • Adding water to their food at every meal
  • Trying a wet or canned food
  • Encouraging water every single time they enter the house
  • Taking a portable water dish with you on walks or anywhere you go together
  • Installing numerous bowls around the house and backyard (but, again, keep them super clean as dirty bowls are 100% unattractive to many pets)

Dangerous Signs of Dehydration

The following symptoms of dehydration should never be ignored:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy
  • Excessive panting without previous exertion
  • No appetite
  • Dry, sticky gums
  • Dry eyes
  • Decreased skin elasticity

Your approach to summer pet safety most likely involves continuous access to shade, air conditioning, reduced exposure to sunlight, and plentiful water. It’s important to only exercise your pet in the morning and evening.

Other Tips

Installing a splash pool for your dog is a great way to maintain their hydration and a healthy body temperature. Taking them swimming is also fun and great exercise, but certain tactics for outdoor safety this summer should be considered first. A life jacket, attention to the weather, other people, and more, are important before setting out.

Delicious Treats for a Hydrated Pet

Another great way to keep up with the needs of a thoroughly hydrated pet is to make your own tasty frozen pet treats. Many pets enjoy chomping on crushed ice cubes. Whether it’s a fruit mix, peanut butter, or tuna for the cats, homemade frozen treats will keep them cool while adding valuable vitamins and minerals to their diet.

As with anything related to your pet’s health and wellness, your team at Oakhurst Veterinary Hospital is always here to answer any questions or address concerns. Stay cool!