Smoke and pollution negatively affect pet health.


Wildfire smoke and outdoor air pollution can have a negative effect on pets and animals outside. Be alert to the slightest signal from your pet and check the air quality alerts.

COLORADO, USA — If wildfire smoke drifting into Colorado from western Canada has you coughing or feeling slightly dizzy with tears in your eyes, you’re in for a treat. You’re not alone – your pet may feel the same way.

As a cloud of intense smoke, what some meteorologists call a “cyclone,” moved through Colorado on Monday and Tuesday. It brought another round of low air quality and dense smoke.

> Video Above: Colorado Wildfire Smoke: How Long Will It Last?

Colleen Duncan, a professor and veterinarian at Colorado State University, said: “The same thing that happens to people happens to pets,” he said. “Pay attention to the subtle signs. If people feel numb and lose their ability to work Animals are no different. But they can’t tell you.”

Duncan said humans and animals are more alike than we are different. and encouraging pet owners to check air quality more often. Although there was no visible signal such as smoke.

Duncan said, “Pets can’t tell you they’re uncomfortable. So there are things we need to think about as their guardians,” Duncan says. They are already at risk.”

Duncan said short-nosed dogs such as pugs or bulldogs It is known to be at risk for breathing problems.

“We now know that they are at increased risk of dyspnea. “Air pollution events in hot climates are risk factors for animals in these categories.”

Duncan’s tips for pet owners to reduce their exposure to air pollution:

  • For high energy dogs Mental exercises should also be provided for your pet to play with. or indoor exercise or training
  • pay attention to exercise Don’t train for marathons or bike races with your dog in bad weather.
  • Know how to find air quality data. Ozone is a big problem in Colorado and it gets worse in the afternoon.
  • Reduce and avoid regional exposure to hazardous air. Do not walk or exercise your pet on busy streets with car pollution. Take a walk in the park with trees and greenery to help filter the air quality.
  • Manual selection of pets is allowed. Now is not the time to run your dog on a leash while you ride your bike. so your pet can’t stop to catch a breath if they’re feeling down

“Walking, not running,” Duncan says, “it’s about taking deep breaths, avoiding deep exertion, and better.”

“We have that signal when we can’t see the foothills,” she said. “What’s scarier is when we don’t talk about it. We also have poor air quality. That is the primary concern of the state. We are not aware of the high pollution levels. But there was no visible sign like smoke.”


Like human athletes, Duncan said, animal athletes are also susceptible to pollution.

“We have horse races at CSU,” Duncan said. We do not exercise or train animals in those conditions.”

For animals that are constantly outdoors, such as cows, air pollution can affect milk production and quality. They can’t go inside. But Duncan says there are other ways to protect them.

“All factors contribute to the risk,” Duncan said. “But make sure they have clean water. have good nutrition Don’t stress in any other way. and ensuring overall animal health in the face of the climate.”

She points out that horses can be susceptible to dust and mold.

“We know that when we have an air pollution event, We can’t control the air. But we can control other things. that cause problems for their health, such as dusty pens,” she said.

Duncan says pollution affects your respiratory and eye health. The tiny particles from smoke enter the bloodstream just as much as pollution.

Duncan said, “When we think of dust Dust can enter the bloodstream. Systemic inflammation increases and affects the heart and brain,” Duncan said. “The reality of air pollution affects the whole body.”

Duncan said the Front Range is riddled with various air pollutants. And CSU’s veterinary school research is ramping up because it’s a concern for animals. She said a veterinary graduate student is conducting a study that will help pet owners translate what air quality alerts mean for their animals.

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