Vet talks pet safety on bad air days

Posted at 9:52 PM, Jan 26, 2014
and last updated 2014-01-26 23:52:04-05

SALT LAKE CITY – Unhealthy air conditions prevail in the Salt Lake Valley again as inversion conditions return, and experts say the bad air is bad for pets as well as humans.

Veterinarian Scott Leiter has been in the business for about 35 years, and he said he usually notices a spike in animal visits when the air quality takes a turn.

“I have seen more cases of bronchitis always during the inversion period,” he said.

He said bronchitis, allergies and asthma can all be exacerbated by bad air quality.

“The inversion right now, we are seeing more cases of our feline asthma cases and also chronic bronchitis,” he said.

Leiter said chronic exposure to the bad air creates a problem, particularly among middle-aged or older animals. Leiter said precautions for pets mirror those prescribed for people.

“It's probably safe to say that whatever is good for people is good for our pets.,” he said.

Leiter said not to leave pets outside for too long during times of bad air, and if pets must be outside they should be in a safe environment.