SAN DIEGO (KGTV)--Enthusiastic pet parents may want to bring their pups along to the beach this summer but there are some important tips to keep in mind to keep Buster happy and safe at the shore.
People of the Ethical Treatment of Animals offers the following advice for a successful beach trip for the whole family:
Never force a dog to go into water. It will be clear if your animal enjoys splash time and it won't take much coaxing
Older dogs or those with frail knees may find sand to be hard on them. The beach can be an exciting outing even for younger pups so make sure to exercise moderation when exposing your dog to the sand
Bring plenty of fresh drinking water and a bowl. Salt water can cause dogs to vomit and become dehydrated. Plus that fur coat needs some water to keep cool
Know thy pet. If dogs are allowed off-leash, only do so if you know she won't run away or act aggressively. Whatever you do, don't let them out of your sight. Use treats to coax them back to you.
Rough, choppy waters are no place for dogs! Typically, right before or after a storm there's a greater potential for dangerous water conditions for you and your pet. If you see lightening, leave the beach as soon as possible
Do not allow your dog to harass beach wildlife. Killing sand crabs may seem like fun to Fido but he will appreciate a ball chase or hole digging just as much
Watch out for discarded fishing hooks and tackle. If you see any, pick it up and remove the litter to keep your pup safe
Watch for signs of heatstroke! Restlessness, heavy panting, vomiting, lethargy and lack of coordination can be symptoms of heatstroke -- if you see your dog exhibiting these signs, get them to shade immediately and lower their body temperature by giving them water, applying a cold towel to his neck and chest and putting him in tepid --not ice cold-- water. Then, call a veterinarian