A pet emergency service is highlighting the risks to animals over the summer months in Eastbourne.
Vets Now, the UK’s leading provider of emergency veterinary care, has released a list of the UK’s safest dog-friendly beaches and another with summer pet-safety tips.
District Vet Liron Levy Hirsch said, “We see a ten per cent increase in emergency cases in summer. It’s really important to spread the word and make the public aware of the dangers.”
Research carried out by Vets Now, which provides emergency care for pets countrywide, has revealed 40 per cent of dog owners admit not knowing how to help their pet in an emergency.
Mr Levy-Hirsch said, “People are out and about in the summer, they’re on holiday. Especially at the seaside in Eastbourne, it’s important owners know where to go and what to do.”
Vets Now emergency vet Laura Playforth has created a list of 13 tips for keeping dogs safe at the beach which includes awareness of temperatures and tides, sunburn and over-exertion.
Mr Levy-Hirsch named heatstroke as one of the biggest risks to animals who haven’t been given enough water or chance to rest in hot weather.
“Just fifteen minutes in an overheated car can literally kill an animal. This is a life-threatening condition treated with complicated procedures. It is much better to avoid it.”
Laura Playforth said, “If your dog is not used to swimming the sea is not the place to start. Be careful of strong tides and rolling waves and make sure your dog doesn’t venture too far out. Waves and currents can quickly exhaust dogs. Stop them lapping up sea water — the salt, bacteria and parasites in it can make them sick.
“Dogs’ paws are sensitive to heat so if it’s too hot for pet owners to walk barefoot then it’s too hot for dogs too. And don’t forget the sunscreen for your dog.”
Vets Now has also created a list of the UK’s best dog-friendly beaches.
David Leicester, head of clinical intelligence with Vets Now said, “We’ve only chosen beaches where water quality is deemed high, dogs are welcome all year, parking and access is good and a daytime vet is based nearby. All those featured are within an hour’s drive of a Vets Now pet emergency service, so if you’re at the beach in the evening or weekend and suffer a pet emergency, you know you’re never far from expert help.”
The 32-page digital guide also has information on dog-friendly hotels and eateries.
Visit www.vets-now.com/petemergencynumber for help in a pet emergency or www.vets-now.com/beaches for the list of dog-friendly seaside spots.
• See this week’s Herald for an emergency pet pack giveaway.