As the temperature heats up and the festive season nears, Australia’s largest not-for-profit animal hospital has offered tips for keeping pets happy and healthy.

Lort Smith head of hospital services Dr Russell Harrison has advised pet owners to particularly keep a watch over their four-legged family members in the next month.

Multiple bowls of water are necessary for animals on hot days, according to the vet, and owners should consider having the fur clipped on their long-haired pets.

To prevent snake bites and grass seeds getting caught in pets’ skin and ears, Dr Harrison has urged pet owners to avoid letting pets walk through long grass.

In the lead-up to Christmas, owners should beware of dogs getting food that could be damaging to their health, such as chocolate.

“Be careful wrapping food as Christmas presents under the tree,” Dr Harrison said. “Your pet dog probably won’t wait ‘till Christmas morning to get into them!”

He said the hospital always saw injured pets in the new year, due to pets being panicked by New Year’s Eve fireworks.

“If you are leaving your dog home
on a night when fireworks are scheduled, consider shutting the windows and leaving the TV or radio on to provide some calming white noise.

“Make sure your pet is microchipped so if they do escape, you will be reunited more quickly.”