Now that the hot weather has receded, is the time to exercise your dog before the ice on the pavement makes walks precarious. But a few things to be cautious about:
- Burs – this is prime time to get stickers in your dog’s fur so restrict them from the trailside plants and check their ears, paws, and fur for stickers. Use a comb to remove most stickers and don’t wear fleece where you could get burs, or you might look worse than your dog.
- Bidens are very common – these occur in wetland areas, but can totally cover your clothes or your dog. These have two little burs that stick to your clothes.
- Burdock is also very common. These are large burs that stick to each other and usually are easily removed.
- Cockleburs hurt! These can be fairly large and they hurt your dog and your hands. They are especially painful between the dog’s pads.
- Tick trefoil – these look like small, flat pea pods. These are easily removed.
- Avens – These tiny green balls can easily cover a dog’s fur.
- Ticks – yes, they are out again! Here is a good chart to identify ticks at different stages, their active months, and the diseases they are known to carry. http://www.tickencounter.org/tick_identification
So with all this in mind, enjoy the fall colors and a hike!