Pets, Wildlife and Camp

Pets, Wildlife and Camp

- in Aging Answers, February 2016
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While winter finally arrived, you may be planning ahead to find the perfect camp, man of which have wonderful outdoor activeties. This means you need to be mindful of the risks that are associated with the great outdoors. Knowing your risks and how to reduce them are your best bet for a safe summer.

Many times, you’ll want to take the family dog along with you to the camp during drop off and pick up time. Are you aware that pets are in contact with wildlife every time they step outdoors? For those of you who let your pets outside without a leash, they are in even closer contact with wildlife. I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen many photos and videos of pets interacting with wildlife. While it may seem endearing (we should all get a healthy dose of the outdoors), it can pose a health risk for your pet and even your family members.

There are several kinds of risks, including, but not limited to:

• Diseases that can be transmitted from wildlife to your pets (and to you!)

• Injuries from bites, kicks, scratches and more

Luckily, there are some simple precautions you and your family can take to reduce your risks. To prevent injuries, keep a safe distance from wildlife (for both you and your pets). At One Health Organization, we remember these disease prevention measures by the 3UP© method:

VET UP: Take your pet to the veterinarian to make sure they are current on all of their vaccinations and on monthly parasite control. (Did you know that mosquitos can be found any month of the year?) This time of year can be slower for veterinary clinics, so now may be the ideal time to take your pet to the veterinarian.

PICK UP: Pick up your pet’s waste promptly to reduce the spread of intestinal parasites. (Did you know that some parasite eggs can be nearly impossible to kill?) While no one enjoys this job, especially in the cold, it’ll reduce the number of piles to clean up during spring time cleaning.

WASH UP: Wash your hands after picking up pet waste and being outdoors, and before preparing a meal. Bacteria and parasite eggs that are found in fecal material can cause serious health effects on animal and human health.

While you may or may not be ready to think about camp for you or your loved ones, it’s always a good time to be prepared to stay healthy with some simple precautions.

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