With the frenzy surrounding Discovery’s annual Shark Week, dog owners need to be reminded to take precaution when exposing your dog to greater and natural predator’s environments. We cannot prevent all special needs conditions such as epilepsy and diabetes but we can be thoughtful to avoid preventable accidents.
Do you take your dog swimming in natural waters? Does your dog accompany you on hiking trips or runs through the woods? Be educated and aware of the areas natural predators. When are they out? Earlier this week, Shark Week told a tale of a small dog that had an unfriendly run in with a shark off of the Santa Monica pier. This dog loved to play fetch off the pier but at dusk, when water visibility it low, it set the stage for an unwanted encounter. Don’t worry, the dog made it and still swims but now at safer times of the day.
It is important to be educated about the wildlife that you and your dog could encounter when enjoying the wild. When my family moved to Arkansas, I was quick to read up on local wildlife, such as snake species and the habits of the coyotes that sometimes attack local dogs. Education is easy and you never know how a small piece of knowledge could prevent a disaster.
Enjoy the outdoors with your dog, but be smart. Stay educated on the wildlife that you live near and any that you could encounter on a trip. We can’t prevent most special needs conditions, but some accidents and unwanted encounters can be prevented. Stay smart and safe, for your dog’s sake.
You can learn more about easy, owner friendly dog care in “Caring for Your Special Needs Dog.” So many dog owners are caring for their dogs by easy, common sense methods. My book, “Caring for Your Special Needs Dog” shares such tips, along with inspirational stories of owners making it work. “Caring for Your Special Needs Dog” may be purchased at Amazon or Barnes and Noble. A PDF copy may be purchased here and is accessible to anyone with a computer. A percentage of the profits from “Caring for Your Special Needs Dog” go to The Texas A&M Foundation to the benefit of the Neurology Section, Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinarian Medicine.
Subscribe to the Special Needs Dog Care Examiner for advice and tips on how to care for a special needs dog from an owner of a special needs dog. For story ideas, email her at NatalieCMarkey@gmail.com You can also follow her on Twitter and her website.