As much as we plan ahead and take precautions, unfortunately accidents happen to both humans and dogs. ILoveDogs.com recently released the top 10 causes of accidental deaths in canines.
There are many dangers around your household that your dog can ingest that are harmful. Human medications are the number one poison, followed by plants, foods, and chemicals. By keeping medicines, cleaners, and foods out of your dog’s reach, and not planting toxic plants in your backyard, you increase the chances of keeping your dog safe. Call the Pet Poison Helpline immediately should your dog eat anything dangerous.
Pools, lakes, rivers, creeks can all be deadly to your dog. Keep a close eye on your dog when near open water, and use a life vest when possible. Installing a fence around your pool will prevent accidental access.
Extreme heat and cold temperatures can cause death to your dog. Do not leave your dog in a car, garage, or outside if it’s too cold or too hot. In warm weather, watch your dog for signs of heat exhaustion and make sure they have plenty of water. In cold weather, put a sweater or coat on short hair breeds when you do take them out.
- Struck by Car
Everyone is in a rush to get where they are going and drivers don’t watch the road as closely as they should. You need to be more diligent than ever about keeping your dog near you and out of the street. Keeping your dog on leash can prevent this tragedy from occurring. Also, make sure your yard is secure so your dog can’t get out.
Although this is predominately a hazard for puppies during their chewing stages, it can happen to any age dog. If you have a known chewer, make sure all power cords are unplugged and out of your dog’s reach.
This is also a bigger hazard for dogs that are chewers. Some dogs like to chew and swallow things they should not. Keep objects out of your dog’s reach that he may try to swallow. Take away bones and toys that are small enough to pose a choking hazard.
- Wild Animals
If you live or travel in an area with a lot of wildlife, be sure you keep your pet in eyesight, especially from dusk till dawn, when they are most likely to be out hunting.
- Jumping from Heights
Your dog may fall accidentally or jump to chase another animal, or if your dog suffers from separation anxiety. You need to watch your dog when he is near an open window, on a deck, or on the top story of a home.
This usually occurs when the dog gets his head stuck in a bag or food container while you are not at home. Make sure things that your dog may want to stick his head in are put away securely when you leave.
- Complications from Anesthesia
This happens more often than most vets care to admit. A simple blood test done prior to putting your dog under can reduce the risk by letting you know if it’s safe to use anesthesia on your dog.
Jeri Wagner is a canine behavioral therapist and master trainer. Jeri uses a natural training system leveraging the same communication methods – body language and voice control – that dogs follow as part of their instinctive pack mentality. Training takes place in the home where the problems generally occur. Jeri trains in western Montgomery County, northern Chester County and eastern Berks County. For more information, call 1-877-500 BARK (2275) or visit www.barkbusters.com.
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