Wildlife dangers and your pet
During summer, it is essential to protect pets and other domesticated animals from possible encounters with local wildlife, which can result in injuries to pets as well as expose them to dangerous diseases. This is why proper attention to pet health and safety, and researching the best pet insurance, is essential in order to ensure the well-being of household pets in the great outdoors.
Fencing Around the Home
Fences are a good first step in preventing pets from coming into contact with other animals, but they only provide a basic level of protection and cannot defend against wildlife that can dig or climb over these barriers. Fences should be maintained and checked for holes and gaps.
One of the greatest risks to pets is the threat of contracting rabies from infected wildlife. Reported rabies cases are up this year in several areas of the country. The Virginia Department of Health, for example, is cautioning pet owners in the New River Valley district that the number of cases of rabies through May of 2011 has already matched the number for the entirety of last year. Cases have been reported in skunks, cats, raccoons and cows. Other areas of the state are similarly affected by the highly infectious disease.
The best way to ensure pet safety and to protect pets against contracting this deadly viral infection is to ensure that they get annual vaccinations against rabies as part of their regular veterinary routine. Rabies vaccinations are required in most areas of the country and provide nearly 100% protection for pets against contracting the disease. Some pet health insurance plans cover a portion these and other routine vaccinations.
In Florida, the growing coyote population is beginning to pose a threat to domesticated animals. There have been a number of substantiated reports of coyotes stalking cats and dogs and even attacking them, according to Greg Andrews of Pinellas County Animal Services.
One way to make lawns and outdoor living areas less attractive to coyotes and other predators is by ensuring that pet food and garbage cans are not readily available food sources outside. Additionally, keeping the grass short and hedges and shrubs neatly trimmed is safer for pets since it presents fewer hiding places for undesired wildlife.
Another way to protect pets from wildlife and outdoor dangers is with pet insurance. Pet health insurance helps to manage costs associated with most possible wildlife-related incidents and also help ensure the best possible veterinary care is more afforable to your beloved pet.