Keeping Your Pet Pig Safe in the Summer Heat

Ah, those lazy days of summer- or not? Even though the weather has become a lot warmer in the afternoon, don’t allow your pig to become a couch potato. They still need exercise, although it’s essential to take extra precautions to keep them healthy and safe no matter how high the mercury rises.

Don’t overdo it: During the summer months, it’s especially important to take things slowly with your pet pig to prevent them from overheating. Keep exercise sessions short and sweet- a shorter walk outdoors followed by a break and then a play session indoors may be just the right mix. And on especially hot days, try exercise indoors as much as possible to keep your pig cool and comfortable.

Avoid the hottest part of the day: In general, the sun is at its peak between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., so it’s best to exercise your pig in the early morning or evening, when temperatures are cooler.

Provide lots of water: Did you know that your pig’s body comprises approximately 70 percent water? Water is an essential nutrient that keeps their cells functioning properly; without it, their body will shut down. While exercising, a pig sweats primarily through area about their nose, so it’s crucial that they have access to cool, fresh water at all times to replace what they’re expending. If they play outdoors, place a water bowl in a shady area to ensure easy access.

Apply sunscreen: It may seem odd, but pet pigs can become sunburned, just as humans do! Light-colored and black colored are especially susceptible. For the best protection, apply adult –specific sunscreen to your pig’s ears, and anywhere you see pink skin.

Supervise all activities: No matter which activities you and your pig enjoy, supervise them at all times. For example, swimming can be a fun summertime sport, and many pigs enjoy the water immensely, but the swimming pool can be a dangerous place. Make sure the pool is fenced to prevent your pig from accidentally falling in, and install a ramp to make getting in and out of the water a breeze.

Observe your pet pig’s condition: Whenever you and your pet pig are outdoors in warm weather, watch for signs of overexertion or heatstroke. A pig with a heatstroke may display symptoms such as rapid open –mouth breathing, a pounding heartbeat, and high body temperature. Call the vet immediately if your pig experiencing this emergency medical condition. Your best bet is to prevent the problem in the first place by limiting strenuous outdoor exercise on warm days and never leaving your pet pig in poorly ventilated areas.

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