Can insect-repellent clothing protect your dog from diseases carried by mosquitoes? Many pet owners are already aware of the dangers of heart worm. Mosquitoes can transmit heart worm to both dogs and cats though an infected bite, but did you know that mosquitoes are not the only pests that can harm your beloved pets? Ticks can spread disease including Lyme disease and fleas can cause skin problems and make your cat or dog miserable.
When we spend time outdoors we have become accustomed to wearing insect-repellent along with clothing that is specially designed to repel bugs. With new developments each day regarding the dangers of mosquito borne Zika virus, we need to be especially diligent making sure that we protect ourselves and our families. What about our beloved pets? If our four legged friends are susceptible to vector-borne illnesses, should we also put them in bug repellent clothing when we take them outdoors?
You may be surprised to find that doing a search on the internet will reveal a wide array of bug-repellent canine clothing that is available for purchase. Items range from bandannas to vests and jackets and even blankets and seat covers. While at first glance these products seem like a fantastic idea to keep you pooch free of disease carrying pests, the design of these items of clothing could be questioned since it basically misses the part of your dog that needs it the most, their nose and snout.
When you really think about it this makes perfect sense. A dog’s snout is one of the most vulnerable areas when it comes to bug bites since the first thing that a dog will do is trot off with his or her nose firmly stuck to the ground. While dogs may not need the bug repellent clothing for protection, it’s still not a bad idea to give your dog an added layer of protection from pests, provided you are following the advice of your regular veterinary doctor and you have your dog on the appropriate protection plan for vector borne diseases like heart worm.
There are some proactive measures that you can take at home to protect you and your pets when you spend time outdoors which include:
• Remove stagnant water from your property, including pet water bowls. Keep watering cans, kiddie pools and other containers upside down to allow water to properly drain.
• Avoid walking in tall grass, low hanging bushes and other areas that are known for fleas and ticks.
• Schedule an appointment with your vet for age appropriate testing and your prescribed preventative medication.
• Try some natural bug repelling options when out for a walk including lemon eucalyptus oil.
• Check your pet carefully after your walk paying particular attention to the snout, ears neck and feet for ticks.
Insect-repellent clothing for your pooch may not keep your dog 100% bug-free, but combining clothing with other bug-repellent and preventative products will go a long way to providing maximum protection for your 4-legged family member.