by:Elisa Speckert- River Road Veterinary Clinic, Norwich VT
Fall is an especially beautiful time to be outside in Vermont and New Hampshire. Your dogs will be grateful for the opportunity to go on a long hike; or take your horses into the country for a ride. But fall is also hunting season, which means extra precautions are needed to ensure your pet’s safety.
For your dogs:
Go to your local feed store or pet store for blaze-orange coverage for your dog in many available items: bandanas, vests, leashes, etc. An inexpensive alternative is to fit a blaze orange t-shirt on your dog. Be sure it fits snugly and the dog is not tripping on it. Do not use white bandanas or any other white items on your dog, because the white is easily mistaken for the tail of a deer. Keep your dog on a leash while walking or hiking.
For your horses:
Keep your horses as close to your house and stables as possible. When riding, avoid know hunting areas, ride in open fields, and avoid riding during peak hunting times, such as early morning. If you do come across a hunter, inform them of your planned route. It is best to ride with a buddy. Wear a hunter orange vest and a brightly colored helmet cover. You should also get a brightly colored rump sheet for your horse.
Elisa Speckert graduated from the University of Vermont in 2008 with a BS in Animal Science. Since then she has worked as a veterinary technician at two different veterinary clinics in Vermont. She takes a special interest in client education and small animal veterinary medicine.