young Australian shepherd playing with leavesAs we round out yet another dry, hot summer here in San Antonio we’ve begun to notice certain changes in our neighborhoods. Folks are out in their yards and garages getting ready for the shifts in temperature our fickle seasons provide.

In your preparations for the coming months please consider your pet. Keep him or her inside and away from the action as you clear away refuse, plant your spring bulbs, fertilize your yard, and prepare your vehicle for the colder months ahead.

Rule of Thumb for Your Green Thumb

Many pet parents are painfully aware that their pups like to dig. However, if he gets his paws and jaws on certain flower bulbs he will be in a world of hurt.

  • Tulip
  • Daffodil
  • Crocus
  • Hyacinth

Chewing on and ingesting any of these bulbs will likely result in vomiting and diarrhea but in large amounts could cause death. The best rule of thumb is to keep your doggie inside if you want to plant your spring bulbs before the first freeze.

It’s also worth mentioning that the stem and flowers of these plants are also dangerous for dogs. If your pooch doesn’t get into the bulbs this fall keep an eye out next spring to ensure he or she isn’t eating any part of the flowering plant.

Fertilization Realization

If you have a nice lawn for your pet to frolic on you may want to fertilize it before the grass goes to sleep this winter. For your pet’s safety, we recommend using an organic fertilizer that is known to be pet friendly.

Be sure to read the label fully as application quantity and time will inform you of when it’s generally safe for pet paws to walk on, usually within 48 hours. Paws can pick up fertilizer residue and accidental ingestion could cause a range of symptoms from vomiting to seizures. It will be best to take your buddy for a walk down the street for a couple of days until the grass is safe again.

Pets and Winterization

Antifreeze is great for your car and absolutely toxic for your pet. As you ready your car for winter please ensure there are no leaks or spills and then store the antifreeze in a cabinet or container your pet cannot get into. Perhaps your cat likes to roam around the neighborhood? Try to supervise him or her better in the coming months so you can be sure he or she doesn’t lap at an antifreeze spill or tainted puddle.

De-Icers Slice Paws

Lastly, while the need for them is rare in the San Antonio area, be cautious when sprinkling chemical de-icers on your pavement. Your furry friends will appreciate gravel or sand best to combat ice.

Of course you cannot control what is used beyond your home’s boundaries. Should your sweatered pet get de-icer like chloride salt on his or her paws during a winter walkabout you should wash it off as soon as you return home.

Autumn Fun

There is always a lot to do when the seasons change and these transitions affect your pet. Along your walks enjoy the sweet aromas of apple cider, chimney smoke and roasted pumpkin seeds. Treasure these moments with her but also remember the basics of keeping her safe as you prepare for winter’s edge.