While the arrival of spring means warmer weather and more time spent outside, for veterinarians it means an increase in cases and emergencies.
From pollen to grills to ivy and bees, there are many dangers that dog and cat owners should be aware of in the spring:
I. External parasites: Fleas and Ticks
Before you take your pet out of the green grass, make sure it is protected against parasites in particular: fleas and ticks.
With the arrival of spring, not only the trees bloom but also the infestations of this nature. Like the sleeping beauty in the forest, fleas and ticks are waiting to be awakened by a damp shop on whose body to find a home and start a whole family. Unfortunately for our pet, the “happy ending” will not address the host. Because these parasites are carriers of many diseases that they will share without hesitation with their host (our dog or cat) and one of the most serious.
Tick-borne diseases are severe and require long-term treatment, most of which can cause irreversible changes in the body and even death.
Fleas can cause allergies, discomfort and severe skin damage due to the itching it causes. They can also transmit various diseases.
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Like humans, cats and dogs can develop allergies to plants, pollen, herbs, and many other spring substances. Pet allergies usually occur as itching of the skin and ear, accompanied by hair loss or inflammation of the skin.
In general, systemic allergies will start as expression on the head, while certain types of contact allergies will be located only on the area of the body that has been in contact with the allergen.
Due to irritation, some animals may even change their behavior, while other individuals may show signs of breathing or tears. In more severe cases, severe allergic reactions can occur that present a veterinary emergency, otherwise they can be fatal.
Generally, from spring to early summer, most homeowners will find antihistamines for humans.
In case of ingestion and overdose, some of these may be toxic to dogs and cats. Signs of toxicity will include vomiting, lethargy, shortness of breath and incoherence. These clinical expressions usually develop within 4 to 7 hours of ingestion. Some dogs may become hyper-excitable and in the presence of large amounts of antihistamines consumed, respiratory depression and coma may occur.
III. Spikes of grass (Aristele)
This fact, surprising or not, is a fairly common cause when it comes to visiting the vet.
When running or playing in the grass, the famous spikes (edges) can be present, which can often reach through any part of the body: from the paw area which is most exposed to the level of the eye, nose, mouth. , ears, etc. Once there, these little grass monsters initially cause inflammation and infection in the area.
Once they penetrate the area on the animal’s body, they tend to sink into the hole created, thus limiting the possibility of being able to be removed simply, while migrating inward.
Also the grass tends to break in the form of blades, so cats that tend to eat long grass or decorative grasses risk obstruction in the nose and throat caused by these remnants of grass.
The intervention of a veterinarian is necessary in such cases.
Spring comes with chocolate delights that we need to take care of. Chocolate contains a toxic stimulant for dogs and cats called theobromine. The amount differs depending on the type of chocolate and sweets.
Read more about Chocolate Poisoning
On sunny spring mornings, who wouldn’t enjoy a freshly baked pastry next to coffee ?! However, let’s not forget that most sweet pastries contain raisins.
Grapes, currants and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs. Thus, it is important to be careful how we protect these types of snacks from our greedy quadrupeds.
VI. Spring flowers
Both dogs and cats love to spend time in the garden, so watch out for poisonous plants for them.
Toxic flower species present in this season include: lilies, daffodils, azaleas, etc. Daffodils are especially toxic to their bulbs. Flower heads can cause vomiting, diarrhea and lethargy. In severe cases leading to dehydration, tremors and convulsions. All these signs can appear from 15 minutes to 24 hours after ingestion. Other spring flowers such as tulips or brandies are considered to be less toxic but nevertheless depending on the individual physiological status of each, they can cause reactions, symptoms and visits to the vet.
ARE YOU COMING. Metaldehyde pesticides
Metaldehyde is an organic compound found in pesticides against snails, slugs and other gastropods.
Make sure the garden is safe for your cat and use this type of pesticide or any type of chemical carefully.
Any consumption of these substances, no matter how small, causes serious intoxications. Signs of pesticide poisoning may occur within one hour of ingestion and include: incoordination, muscle spasms, tremors, seizures and failure to treat may even lead to death.
In these cases, an emergency veterinary treatment is required.
Contact with ivy (Hedera helix) can cause skin and skin reactions in dogs and cats, conjunctivitis, pruritus (itching) and rash.
Excessive salivation, vomiting, diarrhea and in more severe cases, fecal blood and vomiting may occur if ingested.
Who would say no to a barbecue ?! Yes, even dogs or cats couldn’t stand it.
That is why when we go out or go out for a barbecue it is recommended to be careful with our pet.
Skewers, alcohol and bones can be quite dangerous for them, and lust and play can sometimes turn them into the most real thieves.
X. Insect bites
Cats and dogs are innate hunters so they will tend to be constantly intrigued to play with the insects they see. In particular, wasps and bees can sting them, which can lead to an allergic reaction or local inflammation.
Signs of an allergy to wasp or bee stings include swelling, suffering, and difficulty breathing.