Haze isn’t fun for anyone. When haze occurs, we have to take extra precautions to avoid health problems like respiratory conditions and eye problems. And haze does not only affect us, it affects our pets too!

Here are some tips on how to prevent your pets from developing health conditions due to the haze, and what signs you need to look out for.

 

A walk in the park is not “a walk in the park” now.

 

Are my pets in danger due to the haze?

Some pets are more susceptible to the dangers of haze. While some pets are hardier than others, we’d advise to take safety measures for any and ALL kinds of pets. Here we list pets who may be more vulnerable to the hazards of haze:

  1. Dogs and cats – especially ones with flat faces and short noses (eg. Flat-faced Persians, Bulldogs).
  2. Young pets (less than a year)  and old pets (more than 7 years old).
  3. Pets pre-diagnosed with lung and heart diseases (eg. asthma).
  4. Pets with known eye conditions.
  5. Small animals with small lung capacity (eg rabbits, hamsters, etc)

 

Pets with short noses and flat faces are more susceptible to the hazards of haze.

 

How do I keep my pets safe during the haze?

  1. Keep your pets indoors, and close the windows. If your pets are outside or on the balcony, bring them in.
  2. Do not go out for prolonged hours. Only go outside for short periods (eg. bathroom breaks, short walks) and avoid walks at all if the PSI reaches 200.
  3. Do not put masks on your pets! They need to dispel heat from their body and putting obstructions on their breathing may cause overheating.
  4. Wipe pet bodies with pet wipes after walks to remove pollutants stuck on the fur.
  5. Increase air quality by using air filters, air conditioners, fans and air purifiers.
  6. Increase air moisture level by using air humidifiers and tubs of water.
  7. Keep your buddies well-hydrated. Use pet fountains to filter water and encourage them to drink more. Monitor their water feeders frequently, especially if you use water bowls.
  8. Use pet eye drops/artificial tears to flush out pollutants from their eyes.

 

Make sure your pets drink enough clean water during this hazy period.

 

What signs do I look out for?

If you observe any of these symptoms in your pets, bring them to the vet as soon as possible.

  1. Breathing difficulties, such as rapid and abnormal open-mouthed breathing (especially in cats).
  2. Unusual coughing and sneezing.
  3. Increased salivation.
  4. Red eyes, excessive tearing and eye discharge.
  5. Excessive nasal discharge.
  6. Inflamed or swollen mouth, skin and nose.
  7. Vomiting and loss of appetite.
  8. Weakness, lethargy – including loss of body coordination.
  9. Gums turning pale.

This list is not exclusive, and you know your pets best. If you think your pet is behaving strangely and if you think it is related to their health, an immediate visit to vet is highly advised.

We hope with this article, you can help your pets stay healthy during this shady time!

 

Shady times don’t call for shady measures! Stay healthy!


Chinchilla or Totoro? Read about them here!

Interesting Facts About Chinchillas.

1. Chinchilla is a furry little creature that belongs in the order Rodentia (which means “to gnaw”). All animals from the order Rodentia (ie. rodents) have a pair of incisors in each upper and lower jaw which will grow continuously throughout their lives.

2.  To prevent overgrowth, they need to wear down their teeth by gnawing on twigs and wooden items.

3. Chinchillas need a constant supply of hay (in addition to chinchilla-specific pellets) to make sure their digestive systems run smoothly and properly.

4. Chinchillas hail from the rocky mountains in a South American region called Andes, in the high altitude of 12,000 feet from sea level.

5. Chinchillas have the thickest fur of all land animals. Because of this, any parasite that may try to inhabit the chinchillas’ fur will die of suffocation!

6. Because of the fur density too, chinchillas do not take water baths like any other pets. Moisture may stay deep inside the fur (even when you are sure you dried the fur properly!) and may introduce fungal growth on your chinchilla’s skin.

7. Another fun fact on chinchilla’s fur – they have a defense mechanism known as the ‘fur slip’. Fur slips happen when chinchillas release a part of their fur when grabbed (by predators). It will leave a bald spot but don’t worry – it will grow back. If fur slips happen when you handle your chinchilla, you may need to be gentler to assure your chinchilla that you don’t want to harm them.

8. Chinchillas stay clean by rolling in volcanic ash or dust baths. You may also use a chinchilla dry shampoo in case they get smelly.

 

A squeaky clean chinchilla fresh from rolling in dust bath!

 

9. As chinchillas are prey animals, provide a bunch of hiding places where they can go when they’re nervous or frightened.

10. They are crepuscular animals, which means they are most active at twilight (dusk and dawn). This cycle is developed to help them avoid predators and the scorching heat of the sun.

11. Chinchillas get overheated easily. The optimum temperature for them is 21C. If it gets too warm or hot for them, you can see it by the coloration on their ears. Pink or red ears means it is too hot and they are trying to combat it by circulating more blood to regions with less fur.

12. When chinchillas feel happy, they may jump around the room to show it! So get ready to face a chipper 6am-jumper!

13. Speaking of leaps and jumps, chinchillas may jump as high as 6 feet! Monitor their playtime outside the cage as they may get on counter tops and gnaw on wires.

14. They need to have their daily exercises – so install an exercise wheel and rearrange their items once in a while to stimulate them mentally and physically.

15. Chinchillas are sociable animals. They enjoy being in the company of familiar people and other chinchillas, and they love being petted and loved!

 

A loved chinchilla is a happy chinchilla.