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Protecting your pets when air quality is poor

It's summer, and for the past few years, wildfire smoke has been a significant issue for those of us that like to spend time outside. Sometimes, the answer is to spend more time inside, until the air quality gets better. But, as we know, that sometimes isn't the best for your pet's health. So what do experts say in that situation?


If you notice smoke-related symptoms in yourself, your pets are likely feeling it too. Symptoms in pets include coughing, red or watery eyes, nasal discharge, trouble breathing, fatigue, and reduced appetite. Animals with heart or lung disease and older pets are particularly vulnerable and need close monitoring.


Recognizing Symptoms: If your pets show any of the following signs, contact your veterinarian:

  • Coughing or gagging

  • Red or watery eyes, nasal discharge, or throat inflammation

  • Difficulty breathing

  • Fatigue, disorientation, or stumbling

  • Reduced appetite or thirst


Preventive Measures: To protect your pets from smoke:

  • Install high-efficiency filters in your air conditioning system.

  • Create a clean room in your home with a portable air cleaner.


During Smoky Conditions:

  • Keep pets indoors with doors and windows closed.

  • Limit outdoor activities and only allow brief bathroom breaks for pets during air quality alerts.

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