Summer safety in the desert can be quite different than in many other locations. In addition to the standard concerns of too much sun and heat exhaustion, summer safety in the desert includes so many other things.
Along with the fun that summer brings, in our Arizona desert, it also brings many warnings. Like anyplace else, in Arizona we promote watching your little ones around water as a primary focus of summer safety in the desert. Lifeguards are present only at public city pools. Our lakes, as well as private pools and pools in any apartment community do not have lifeguards.
Summer safety in the desert also includes your four legged family members. As the heat can cause exhaustion to set in faster, even the most agile pup can become quickly exhausted when out in the summer heat. Stay hydrated, and have plenty of fresh cool water for your four legged family members. Never ever leave your pet in your vehicle, even if just for a minute. The desert sun can easily heat up the pavement and sidewalks. Before you take your pup for a walk, be sure that the ground is not to hot for his little feet! A quick touch test will tell you – if you cannot walk barefoot on the pavement/blacktop/sidewalk then neither can your pet. Although we know exercise cannot be stopped for the long summer months, we have a responsibility to take precautions for our furry family members – Petsmart sell an awesome “boot” your pup can wear – (Gibby and Yogi both have these, although Yogi has chewed a hole in the toe of one)!
Summer safety in the desert also means being aware of your surroundings at all times. A snake can be at your feet before you ever see it if you are not careful. If you see a snake, according this article as much as your instinct tells you to run, don’t do it. The sudden movement will startle the snake and it will go into fight mode (and most likely bite you). Be safe, keep your distance and slowly back away. As intriguing as it may seem, especially to visitors from other states, don’t try to engage the snake to play with you, it really does not want to be your friend. The Arizona Department of Fish and Game report that of the 52 different types of snakes in Arizona, 13 of them are rattlesnakes. Once the weather reaches 80 degrees in the desert, it’s time to be on the lookout.