This week is National Wildlife week so we wanted to share a few helpful hints to keeping your pet safe around wildlife. Lets' chat about 5 potentially hazardous critters here within our area locally.
1) The mosquito. It is perhaps the smallest problem child we have in our area. They carry disease, and should your pet get bitten by one, the very least that will happen is some discomfort.
2) Fleas and ticks. They are found most outside, in nature. Within Colorado, there are many of those nice outside places, with a majority just west of where we are. Use products that will deter fleas and ticks from getting your pet.
3) Skunks. Few things are worse than finding your dog coming inside after being sprayed by a skunk. Skunks are largely nocturnal animals, so you can avoid a lot of that issue by keeping your dogs inside at night. If you need to let them out, let them out on a leash, or make noise and turn on the light to scare off any skunk that may be in the area.
4) Raccoons. Well they are cute, they also carry a lot of disease. It is important to keep trash in an enclosed can, so as to discourage them from digging in your bin.
5) Coyotes. These creatures are good diggers and can easily scale a 6-foot fence. They generally stay away from cities, but being in a suburban area, so close to wide open spaces, we are in a special situation. They're learning to adapt to more humans around them. Keeping food in an enclosed place , and a well-lit yard will help keep them from coming to your space.
There are also a few more that are just west of us. This can potentially include bears, elk, and other bigger creatures. It is important to stay safe from those as well, when camping, hiking, or spending a day in nature. So a few general tips, would be to keep your area clean, and make it appear uninviting to any unwanted guests. Keep your dogs on a leash, and be aware of any changing surroundings, or the noises of any animals that could potentially be a danger.
When you're at home or spending a day trip in the mountains, going hiking, camping etc., here are 6 things you can do to keep you and your pet safe
Stay on the lookout when outdoors
Be alert to changing conditions. Listen for unfamiliar noises, and familiar ones that could be bad. It's important to stay on trails as well, as animals can smell where the people have been.
Keep your area clean
Keep your trash cleaned up, and make sure you're not growing a breeding ground. When you're at home, keep your backyard clean, Keep your trash in a dedicated closable bin. This deters animals from building themselves a home near yours. If they can't find food, they won't stay.
Try to keep bright lights around,
These unwanted guests tend to get scared when the light turns on abruptly. Think about getting a motion sensor.
Keep your pet’s vaccinations up to date.
Unwanted animals often carry diseases, and many of those can be vaccinated against. A few of the most well known ones include rabies and parvo . Giving your pet protection against these not only helps to save them, but also can make it less likely that you could contract a disease like that period
Do not feed the wildlife.
Try to keep food in a car, or with you at all times. If you're in a National Park, keep an eye out for the designated trash bins. They are specially designed to keep animals out of them, to help keep the guests in the park, and their pets, safe.
Keep your dog on a leash or at home
As tempting as it is to have your dog explore the wild if at all possible, keep your dog on a leash or at home. This will protect your dog from finding an unwanted critter on the ground, or from an unwanted critter finding him.
When outdoors know what animals can be a problem in your specific area and do research to figure out how you can stay safe from those critters. Many National Park web sites give you information on what wildlife you will see, and what you should do to keep you, your pets, in your property inaccessible. Let's all be alert of the wildlife around us. If we keep these tips in mind, everyone will have a safe and healthy summer, both for people and pets.