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Watch Out for your Fur Baby in This Heat – Beware of Dog Heat stroke

Watch Out for your Fur Baby in This Heat – Beware of Dog Heat stroke

If you are hiking, make sure the time of day you choose to hike with your dog is appropriate temperature-wise. Even if you hike regularly hike with your dog and they are used to that type of rigorous exercise, in this hot weather they could succumb to heat exhaustion.   Yes we want our fur babies with us on our hikes, but sometimes it is better and safer to leave your dog at home.

Dogs are much more susceptible to heat stroke than humans. Dogs’ only sweat glands are on their feet. If the ground is too hot for your hand, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.

Always have plenty of water for both you and your dog. It’s better to bring along a little extra than not enough. You might also want to pack a few doggie treats and search for a shaded area to take your breaks.

Be alert to the signs of heat stress, which, in dogs, includes panting and excessive drooling. If your pet has become overheated you must take the following steps immediately:

  • Move your pet into the shade and apply cool, not cold, water all over its body to gradually lower its body temperature.
  • Apply ice packs or cold towels only to your pet’s head, neck and chest.
  • Let your pet drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes.
  • Take your pet directly to a veterinarian; it could save your pet’s life.  Dogs can die of heat stroke.
Stowe Trail Permit

Stowe Trail Permit

We have finally located where you need to go to get a permit to use the Stowe Trail.  Permits are only good for one year and everyone over the age of 10 must have one for walking, hiking, horseback riding, and biking.

Stowe Trail Permit will take you to the webpage set up by the Marines.

Here are some Q&A’s regarding the use of the trail.

Q1. What is the age required to obtain a permit?

A1. All U.S. citizens, 10 years of age and older, must obtain a permit in order to access Stowe Trail.  Approval of permits will depend on the results of background checks for adults and the completion of appropriate paperwork by all applicants.  Permit holders under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult permit holder.  Children under the age of 10 may access Stowe Trail with a permit-holding parent or legal guardian provided that the permit holder has a signed liability waiver on file for each child.

Q2. What will occur if someone accesses the trail without a permit?

A2. Persons who access Stowe Trail without a permit may be subject to citations, fines, and any other punitive measure as determined by the U.S. District Court. Specifically, these persons may be subject to a $500 fine and confiscation of property.

Q3. What are the ramifications of going off the trail?

A3. Persons who trespass onto trails other than Stowe Trail, and all persons who lack a permit, may be subject to citations and any other punitive measure as determined by the U.S. District Court. These persons may be subject to a $500 fine, confiscation of property, and loss of permit.

Q4. How do I know the boundaries of the trail?

A4. There are signs along the trail to ensure permit holders stay within the boundaries of the trail.

Q5. What is the helmet policy?

A5. Helmets are required while riding a bicycle aboard all U.S. Marine Corps installations.

Q6. Am I allowed to ride a motorized vehicle on the trail?

A6. No, motorized vehicles are prohibited from using Stowe Trail.

Q7. What forms of transportation are authorized on the trail?

A7. Activity while on the trail is restricted to recreational bicycling, hiking, and horseback riding; no intentional delay or other unauthorized activity is permitted.

Q8. Are there canine restrictions?

A8. Full or mixed breeds of Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, canid/wolf hybrids, and any other canine breed with dominant traits of aggression, present an unreasonable risk to the health and safety of personnel on Marine Corps installations and are prohibited.

Q9. Can my permit be revoked?

A9. Any disruptive, disorderly or illegal conduct may result in the permanent revocation of trail privileges and be subject to enforcement by law enforcement officials and prosecution under U.S. code.

Q10. Are items prohibited from being on the trail?

A10. Prohibited items include firearms, knives, replica or toy weapons, pepper spray, mace, stun guns, martial arts weapons, or other weapons of any kind (regardless of permit);  alcoholic beverages; drones (i.e. quad or hex copters); lasers or laser pointers;  and federally-banned substances such as illicit narcotics and marijuana.  State laws regarding medical and recreational marijuana are NOT recognized aboard MCAS Miramar, including Stowe Trail.

Q11. Are trail improvements and maintenance allowed?

A11. Any modification or other “improvement” of the trail is strictly prohibited unless specifically authorized by the commanding officer of MCAS Miramar.

What in the World is a Tarantula Hawk?

What in the World is a Tarantula Hawk?

When you hear of a tarantula hawk the first thing that comes to mind is that it is a hawk that eats tarantulas.   But you’d be wrong.  It is a spider wasp which hunts tarantulas.

Tarantulas have earned a deadly reputation as a predator capable of killing mice, lizards and small birds.  But the spiders are known to run in fear from the tarantula hawk.   The tarantula hawk wasp preys on its namesake, engaging in a ferocious battle that leads to the spider being paralyzed with a highly painful sting.   Once stung, the tarantula becomes paralyzed within seconds. The condition will last for the remainder of its life.   The tarantula hawk wasps then drag the sleeping spider – which can be up to eight times their weight – to a burrow, lay an egg on the tarantula and seal up the tunnel. The young wasp devours the tarantula in order to develop into an adult, eating the non-essential organs first to keep it alive for as long as possible.

Tarantula hawks have not only worked out how to successfully attack a predatory spider but also to reserve the best meals for their most valuable offspring. The wasps are able to decide the sex of their baby by choosing whether to fertilize the egg or not, fertilized eggs produce females while males come from unfertilized eggs.   Males, unlike females, do not have to find and battle tarantulas, they simply seek flowers and a mate and as a result they are not required to grow as large as females.

Females are not very aggressive, in that they are hesitant to sting.  So you don’t really stand a chance of being bitten by the fearless wasp, unless you do something incredibly stupid like handle the wasp… but the sting is extraordinarily painful.  The sting has been described as beyond imagination.  It only lasts about 2 to 3 minutes, but it is unsurpassed in intensity by any other stinging insect.

And if you do get bitten…

“There are some vivid descriptions of people getting hurt by these things,” says Ben Hutchins, invertebrate biologist at Texas Parks and Wildlife. “Their recommendation – and this was actually in a peer-reviewed journal – was to just lie down and start screaming, because few if any people could maintain verbal and physical coordination after getting stung by one of these things. You’re likely to just run off and hurt yourself. So just lie down and start yelling.”

 

Information courtesy of the BBC and Odditycentral.com

The photo below is of a Mexican Tarantula Wasp (Pepsis mexicana)