The American healthcare industry is quite large, but so is the industry for animal medicine. The concept of animal medicine is quite old, and for centuries, some doctors specialized in the medical care of horses, given how incredibly important those animals were for society. Today, many millions of American households have one or more pets, most of them being dogs or cats. Americans may also own a variety of animals ranging from songbirds to parrots, rabbits to snakes, fish to tarantulas. These animals are often well cared for by their owners, but sometimes, a dog or cat may get ill or injured, and an animal medical center will be necessary. In most cities, a 24 hour animal hospital might not be far away, and emergency vet options may include an animal hospital where life-threatening injuries in a pet can be operated on to save that animal’s life. Anyone’s beloved cat, dog, or bird can be nursed back to health at a clinic or hospital, and pet owners can practice some basic summer pet safety, such as not keeping dogs in the heat for too long. Observing summer pet safety means taking the weather into account for animals and not just people.
Winter and Summer Pet Safety
Pets may experience discomfort during extremes of weather, just like people, and some pet owners may accidentally leave their dog outside for too long in very high or low temperatures. Summer pet safety means limiting how long a dog spends outside in the heat, as dogs may overheat and suffer just like a person would. Dogs can pant to cool themselves down, but that can only do so much. A responsible dog owner will limit the dog’s time outside, and provide their dog with cool water indoors, not to mention air conditioned air. And when walking a dog outside, summer pet safety can include giving the dog little boots to protect its paw pads from hot sidewalk surfaces. People always wear shoes outside, so it can be easy to forget how hot sidewalks and pavement can be. Fortunately, dogs can borrow the idea of shoes to keep their paws safe during outings.
During winter, dogs should have their time outside limited, or else they may suffer from the cold. This may be especially true for slender or small dogs, or dogs with short fur. Winter pet safety includes not only limited time outside, but even diving your dog a sweater or jacket, especially for dogs with short fur. The exception may be breeds who are used to the cold, such as Malamuts and Siberian Huskies. These dogs are adapted for cold Russian winters, and they can easily endure low temperatures if need be. All the same, a pet owner may want to play it safe and limit their dog’s outside time, or at least check up on the dog regularly to see if that dog urgently wants to come inside.
Going to a Vet Clinic
An animal hospital is where serious injuries in cats and dogs may be treated, but an animal clinic is the right choice for everyday pet care and checkups. At a clinic, many different species can undergo routine exams, and dogs and cats may have their fur, paw pads, ears, noses, gum and teeth, and other features examined for anything unusual. At these clinics, the pet owner may be advised to alter the pet’s lifestyle, such as giving it more exercise, brushing it more often, or changing its diet. Elderly cats and dogs, or puppies and kittens, should especially be taken in often, as puppies and kittens are still growing and elderly pets may often develop health problems, just like elderly people.
When visiting a dog clinic, a guest may bring their dog on a leash if that dog is well trained and can get along with strangers and other dogs. Cats can be brought in carrying kennels, as can small mammals, while birds may arrive in cages. If a dog or cat is easily distressed or may act aggressive toward other people or pets in the clinic, then the owner may keep the pet in the car (with climate control, if need be) until it is that pet’s turn to be examined.