As the ground becomes adorned with vibrant hues of yellow, orange, and red leaves, it clearly indicates that Autumn has arrived. However, while this season is enjoyed by many, there are seasonal risks to our furry family members that all responsible pet owners should be aware of, which is why, in this article, we will provide you with some essential Autumn safety tips for dogs and cats!
Be Mushroom Aware
Our very own vet Tom-Rhind Tutt BVetMed MRCVS, commented, “We see lots of different mushrooms come out in the damp, dark weather, the vast majority of these are toxic, and it is best just to prevent ingestion altogether, I personally love finding mushrooms, and I’m on a few Facebook groups for identification, rarely ever do you see safe ones for dogs”.
“I know over the years I’ve seen many cases where dogs aren’t right after snaffling things in the woods, so owners should be vigilant”, Tom warned.
Remember also to consider our top tips for walking your dog at night, especially as the nights start to draw in!
Beware of Antifreeze
As the temperature drops in Autumn, many of us will likely be reaching for the Antifreeze to top up our cars. While we are all aware that Antifreeze is toxic, our dogs, in particular, may be attracted to the sweet and alluring smell.
Tom added, “Antifreeze is seriously toxic to the kidneys and has a sweet smell and flavour which can attract dogs and, occasionally, cats too. Always ensure that antifreeze is safely sealed and that there are no spillages when refilling the car”.
Halloween Safety Tips For Pets
Autumn also means that Halloween is fast approaching. However, at Halloween, there are many common hazards to dogs, particularly chocolate, which is highly toxic. Even pumpkins can be hazardous, as we have highlighted in more detail in our tips on how to have a dog-friendly Halloween.
Fleas and Ticks
Unfortunately, Fleas and ticks are still around even in the cooler months, such as Autumn, so you should continue using flea and tick prevention products as your veterinarian recommends. Regularly check your pets for these parasites, especially after outdoor excursions in wooded areas or tall grass.
Keep Your Furry Friends Warm
While our cats and dogs may wear fur coats (to varying degrees) year-round, they can naturally still get cold. Just like humans, cats and dogs can suffer from hypothermia, so be mindful of how long your pets spend outdoors. If your pet is shorthaired or small, consider purchasing a cosy sweater or jacket for them to wear when going outside. Ensure that they also have a warm and comfortable sleeping area inside the house.
Conkers can be potentially dangerous to dogs. These seeds contain a toxic compound called aesculin, which can cause various health issues if ingested by dogs. Conker poisoning in dogs is uncommon, but it’s essential to be aware of the risks and take precautions.
With more time spent indoors during cooler weather, provide indoor enrichment for your cat and dog to keep them mentally and physically active. Toys and scratching posts can be a great interactive activity for cats, and we have lots of tips on how to stop your dog from getting bored too!
Autumn can be a wonderful time to enjoy the outdoors with your dog, while your cats will likely simply enjoy exploring their surroundings. However, it also requires extra care and attention to keep them safe. Following these autumn safety tips can ensure your pets stay healthy and happy during the season. Remember that being a vigilant and caring owner is the best way to protect your furry friends from the potential hazards of this beautiful season.