According to pet insurance companies, what is the worst month for canine accidents? Why?
Many canine injuries take place during the warmer months. In fact, Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI) had the most claims in June back in 2010.
A big reason, many suspect, is because those are the months when dog parks are most utilized. Just in the last five years, the number of dog parks has increased in this country by 34 percent. They can be great places for your dog to blow off some steam, play, run, exercise and socialize—but that also comes with a cost to your pet’s health.
According to Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), the following eight dog park-related injuries and illnesses were the most common in 2011:
• Sprains and soft tissue injuries
• Lacerations and bite wounds
• Upper respiratory infection and kennel cough
• Insect bites
• Head trauma
• Hyperthermia or heatstroke
Many young puppies haven’t been fully vaccinated and rough play can cause injury. Kennel cough, a relative of the human whooping cough, can be easily transmitted to other dogs during close quartered panting, or full frontal sniffing each other to get acquainted.
In addition, canines love to chase and bite at flies, bees and wasps and, after they grab one or two, they may be rewarded with a swollen face and muzzle. Heatstroke is a real danger in summer; your dog’s internal temperature can quickly rise during strenuous play, resulting in heatstroke.
In addition, some dog owners just don’t pick up after their dogs and that, in turn, can cause the spread of parasites—and, by the way, so do fleas! Dogs can be punctured or cut by wires, glass and even other dogs. Giardia is a protozoon that is shed by infected dogs, dogs that are carriers, and urban wildlife; it also loves standing water and streams.
Use a little common sense: Watch yours and other dogs, and don’t bring your dog if she’s not fully vaccinated or feeling under the weather. And don’t get too sanguine when summer’s over—dogs can also get sprains and pulled muscles from too-cold tissue!