Watch out for dogs developing swimmer’s tail this summer

Watch out for dogs developing swimmer’s tail this summer

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The dog days of summer have veterinarians sending out warnings for a number of different issues including wind, heat, and even exercise in the pool or lake. These are all activities that can leave your dog’s tail with a sprain.

Director of Veterinary Medicine at Oasis Animal Hospital Jamie Augenstein said she has been seeing a lot of animals in for signs of upper respiratory condition she blames on the wind.

Augenstein also said it doesn’t take long for pets to burn their pads while walking on hot concrete. Test the pavement with the palm of your hand before you let your dog walk on it. Owners should also keep pets hydrated and in the shade.

Try to only take pets out early in the morning, or late in the evening. And even then, if hiking, be cautious as the ground and rocks can tear up your dog’s pads.

“The dogs will get overheated so fast and you have to be cautious about the altitude for some animals,” Augenstein told 8 News Now. “If your dogs got heart problems, be careful with the altitude.”

If pets can’t wait to jump in the pool or the lake for a dip, ease them into the water. One yellow lab named Henry just recovered from what’s known as limbertail syndrome, also known as cold tail or swimmer’s tail.

Henry spent too much time wagging his tail, swimming in the pool, and suffered a sprain that was painful to the touch. “Don’t just throw them in and let them swim around for hours on end,” Augenstein said. “Let them work up to it, basically you’re allowing those muscles to strengthen themselves up and the ligaments get stronger.”

Large working dogs, hunting breeds, and athletic dogs such as labrador retrievers, English pointers, and golden retrievers are typically affected by swimmer’s tail. The animal’s tail will improve with a little rest and some anti-inflammatory medications.

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