![if IE]> <![endif]>
Dogs can be a critical part of a farm's workforce and daily operations. They provide protection and assistance with livestock movement, as well as much-needed companionship. Since dogs can be crucial to keeping a farm running, they are an investment that needs to be protected and properly cared for.
Health Risks for Outdoor Dogs
Being outdoors, farm dogs are exposed to a number of risks. One major risk to farm dogs is worms and parasites. A few of the most common are as follows:
Consult a veterinarian about appropriate vaccination and deworming plans. Vaccinations, once initially administered, should be boostered annually. For other pests, such as fleas, ticks, flies and other insects, suitable protection can be collars, sprays or shampoos.
In the summer, serious problems that farm dogs can face are dehydration and heat stroke. Heat stroke occurs when a dog's body temperature rises unnaturally high. Darker-colored dogs with thick coats are more prone to heat stroke. Symptoms include lethargy or dizziness, decreased urination, refusal to eat, sunken eyes and dry or dark red gums.
Heatstroke in Dogs
To prevent heat stroke and dehydration, farm dogs need unrestricted access to clean, fresh water and lots of cool shade. Wet dog food can also provide extra hydration in the summer. If a dog is exhibiting symptoms of heat stroke, it needs to be cooled down immediately by removing it from environmental heat, bringing it to an air conditioned setting and placing the animal in front of a fan.
Overheated dogs can also be immersed in cool water (not ice cold) for a few minutes and cold packs can be placed on the dog's groin and paw pads. A veterinarian should be called immediately if the dog does not cool down within 30 minutes.
Hypothermia in Dogs
In the winter, hypothermia is the biggest risk to outdoor farm dogs. Extreme cold can cause a dog's body temperature to drop very low. Symptoms can be violent shivering, slow pulse and trouble breathing, lethargy and muscle stiffness. Many common farm breeds can handle cold weather well, but in the interest of the dog's safety, preventative measures should be taken, including:
Because dogs are typically working animals they can be at greater risk for health concerns or accidents. Farm dog owners may want to consider pet insurance to protect the investment in their pet.
Protect your Farm Dog
Farm dogs can be great companions as well as an essential part in the workings of a farm, however they do need to be properly cared for and protected. As outdoor pets, dogs can encounter issues such as worms and parasites, as well as seasonal problems such as dehydration and heat stroke or hypothermia.
Consider Investing in Pet Insurance
Looking for more ways to keep your farm dog happy and healthy? Consider investing in a pet insurance policy with MetLife Pet Insurance.1 Get your free quote today.
1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.
2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.