Open mobile navigation

Summer Safety Tips 2017

It’s that time of year again; 105-degree heat indexes and finding ways to stay cool during the Florida summer. Unfortunately, our pets cannot complain about the sizzling heat and rely on us keep them cool. Therefore, our Tampa Bay veterinarian has a few tips to help keep your pets refreshed and safe this sizzling summer!

• Private Oasis: When outside your pet needs a place to escape from the sun rays. Place an elevated cot-like bed under a beach tent or awning. This will keep them off the hot pavement and creates a private oasis of their own. You can also wet the bed to provide additional cooling relief. Provide plenty of easily accessible water and constantly refill with cold water or ice cubes.

• Cool Paws = Cool Bods: Asphalt can reach temperatures of 120-130-degree which can burn paw pads and cause body temperatures to rise. Avoid paved areas and stay on the grass during walks. Walks should be taken during the cooler parts of the day, typically dust and dawn to avoid overheating.

• Pool Time: Although a nice cool swim can provide immediate relief from the heat, pets should be monitored and never left alone around a pool. Safety gates and fencing should be used to keep your pet out of the pool when you’re not around. It’s also important to rinse your pet’s coat after a dip to remove harsh chloride and chemicals from their skin. These chemicals can sometimes cause skin irritation.

• Summer Cuts: Do not shave your pet. Believe it or not, their coats provide protection from overheating and sunburn. A simple trim is all they need to look and feel they’re best this summer.

• Hot Cars: Pet should never be left in the car regardless to the time frame. A non-running vehicle on a 95-degree day can reach 114-124 degrees in 10 minutes. In that 10 minutes your pet can suffer severe heatstroke. If you see a pet in a car at any time call 911 immediately.

• Backyard Barbeques: We all enjoy time with family, friends, and our pets. Keep in mind human foods are for humans only! Common backyard treats such as: barbecued pork, chicken, and beef, hot dogs, baked beans, coleslaw, corn of the cob and other tasty treats can lead to unwanted and costly veterinarian visits if your pet gets even a bite. Keep pets away from the food table and inform guest not to feed them no matter how much they beg.

When it comes to staying cool this summer just remember if you are hot so is your pet. By following these helpful tips, we hope you and your pets have a relaxing, safe, and refreshing summer. If you are concerned about heatstroke, chemical irritation, or any other pet safety issues please contact our office today at 813-501-4985. Our River Mill Animal Hospital staff will be happy to assist you with all your pet needs.

New Patients Receive a Complimentary Exam.

Office Hours


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-5:30 pm


8:00 am-12:00 pm





  • "Dr Hodge takes the time to really know your pet and seeks out the most current information regarding their diagnosis. The staff is fantastic and treat my babies like their own."
    Danielle S.

Featured Articles

Newsletter Sign Up