Keeping Your Animals Safe in the Tennessee Summer Heat
Tennessee is a beautiful state but can get a little toasty in the summer. Because of those extra-warm summer days, there are certain precautions you need to take on your newly-purchased owner financed land, especially if you have either pets or farm animals. Animals can’t do a lot on their own to help themselves, other than what nature has provided to help them. So as the owner, you have the responsibility to keep these creatures safe. What can you do?
1. Provide Cool Shelter
The easiest way to keep your pets or farm animals from getting overheated on a hot day is to make sure they have a place out of the sun where they can cool off. If that shady spot is a barn, be sure it is well-ventilated with access to water as needed.
Pets are best kept inside the house on hot days, as long as the house is kept cool. Whenever possible, do not take your pets with you when you need to go on an errand in the car. NEVER keep a pet in a parked car. Even if you crack the windows open, the temperature in the car will elevate more quickly than you probably realize. It’s also dangerous to leave animals inside a running vehicle.
2. Have Clean Water Available
Hydration is key to keeping all animals cool and healthy. Adding ice cubes to their water can be a way to entice them to keep drinking, as the cool water can relieve them more quickly.
In addition to drinking water, cooling an animal with a bath or shower of cool water can also help, especially for those animals with thick fur. If your animal is not a fan of being bathed, consider putting a wet towel on its back.
3. Keep an Eye Out for Dangerous Conditions
Always be aware of whether an animal is able cool itself naturally. Because many animals pant to relieve themselves in the heat, it is important watch the humidity. Panting is a way of getting excess water out of their lungs. High humidity will make it difficult for the animal to evaporate the excess moisture.
When the weather is hot, watch your animals for signs of heatstroke. If you notice any of these: rapid heart rate, glazed eyes, lethargy, trouble breathing, vomiting or other signs that show your animal is not acting like itself, seek medical treatment, or administer it yourself, if you are confident.
4. Take a Break
Hot days are not the best days to walk or work your animal. If you do need to take your animal outside, consider going out in the evening, when the temperature begins to drop. Avoid the midday sun whenever possible on hot days.
The dog days of summer can be a lot for some of our furry friends to take. But, with a little love, you can keep those animals safe and happy as you both enjoy the little farm you’ve built on your piece of land in Tennessee.