8 Autumn Hazards to Dogs
Cozy sweaters, Pumpkin Spice Lattes, and shorter days. Yup, autumn’s almost here. And pup parents will soon start seeing the warnings about Thanksgiving leftovers posted all over the internet.
But did you know there are other autumn-specific hazards that you might not even know could harm your pooch?
1. Nighttime walks
Ok, so nighttime walks happen year-round. But with the transition to shorter days, sunset might come sooner than you think. And you might not be prepared when darkness falls halfway through your walk. That’s why it’s a good idea to have some kind of reflective gear on you and your dog, especially if you walk him in an area with cars zooming by.
Another thing to consider is visibility in case your dog gets lost. My rambunctious squinky-faced pup Lady once escaped from our house. I’ll never forget the panic that started to set in once I realized the sun was going down. (She’s fine now — her American Bulldogy stubbornness is no match for meaty treats.)
The cool rainy weather and composting leaf piles make the perfect environment for mushrooms to start popping up everywhere, and, just like you probably wouldn’t start plucking and eating toadstools off the ground (we hope), your dog shouldn’t either.
No, it’s not because your dog might start hallucinating and then run off to join a commune for hippie dogs. Not all mushrooms are lethal, but you never know which type of mushroom can be toxic. And you don’t want to risk it. So keep a close watch when going for hikes in woodsy areas and other places mushrooms thrive.
Click here to read our blog post "5 Poisonous Mushrooms You Should Know"
3. Fleas and ticks
If you think fleas and ticks are a thing of the past once temperatures start going down, think again. You and your pup may pick them up on camping trips or walks in woodsy areas, and nobody has time for itching or disgusting ticks that can transmit a number of serious diseases like Lyme Disease (and a host of other nasties that can come when dealing with these pests.)
You’ll want to have your pup on a flea and tick control product so ticks and fleas won’t stand a chance.
You can try to cling onto summer for as long as you can get away with wearing your booty shorts and flip flops, but the cold weather eventually wins. And that’s when the cozy sweaters come out!
For those of you lucky enough to not be plagued by moth larvae that munch on your sweaters: everyone is jealous of you.
For the rest of us, we might still be using mothballs. Because the thought of hotboxing obnoxious critters to death reminds us of the good ol’ days of rummaging through Grandma’s closet for vintage gems.
Keep your dogs away from these balls. If your dog just so happens to come up to you with mothball breath, get him to a vet ASAP.
If your dogs like to help out in the garden, make sure you keep them away from the steaming pile o’ gardener’s gold in your yard. You don’t want to deal with the poop squirts that might result from eating half-decomposed food. Also, any apple cores you chuck in there from making your delicious apple cider will make your dog sick.
It’s toxic. Just five tablespoons can kill a medium-sized pup. But your dog doesn’t know that. And even if you take your car to the mechanic for all your car maintenance needs or dispose of your antifreeze properly, your neighbor might not. Don’t let your pup drink from puddles, especially if you can’t figure out the source.
Creatures that can’t stand the dropping temperatures will try to shack up in your house, which is why fall is a time people set out traps and poison. Regardless of where you stand on the To Kill or Not To Kill debate, you can’t ever be completely sure that your dog won’t get his nose into something harmful.
Always keep your pup on a leash during walks to avoid ingestion of poison. And it wouldn’t be a bad idea to have some emergency numbers saved onto your phone as well.
8. Allergies. Specifically hayfever.
Allergies can act up with the season changing from Summer to Fall, which can irritate your pups skin. Make sure you consult with your vet if your pup is showing any signs of allergies.
As always, we recommend that you keep emergency numbers handy in case of any emergency. Don’t hesitate to contact your vet or the Animal Poison Control Center if you see your dog acting strangely or suspect she might have gotten into something she shouldn’t have. After all, you can’t ever be too cautious when it comes to keeping your family in good health.