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Yesterday was officially the 1st day of spring. With the unusually warm weather we've seen over the past week in Ohio, it feels more like May to me. So, with our pleasant weather, more people will be getting outdoors with their dogs. I thought now might be appropriate time to offer a few safety reminders.
Water in our area is still very cold. Even with warm air temps for the past week, many of our lakes and rivers are still in the 50 degree range. Water at this temperature can quickly cause hypothermia in dogs and people, so please don't be fooled by those warm air temperatures. We need a few more weeks of sustained warm weather before swimming for dogs will be safer.
The early warmth also means that ticks are already hatching and looking for targets. Lyme disease is a particular concern with ticks, so closely look for any parasites on dogs that have been outdoors. Our trend of wet weather also means fleas will likely be particularly problematic this year. Consult your Veterinarian for best preventive measures for your pet, including the possible need for early medications this season.
Finally, early spring weather means people will be applying fertilizers and pesticides to their properties earlier than usual. Keep this in mind when you have your pet out in neighborhoods, around developments, and even near farms. Runoff from treated areas can leave toxins in waterways and other spaces around communities.