An air quality advisory has been in effect for weeks now due to the wildfires, and people not only need to worry about their own health but their pets as well.

The same consideration and warnings out there for humans during an air quality advisory is the same for cats and dog, like reframing from strenuous activity and avoiding being outside for an extended period if you have respiratory problems.

“If they are close to the ground, so if the smoke is mostly higher, they may be spared a little bit, but because cats groom themselves if they smell like smoke they can get exposed that way,” says Emilia Gordon, Senior Manager of Animal Health for the BC SPCA. “We do worry about them because they have all that hair that traps smoke.”

Certain dog breeds are more prone to having problems in smoky conditions added Gordon.

“The ones we worry about the most, are the ones that are brachycephalic, which means they have the short face.”

“They are already at risk of respiratory complications. So, anything that compromises their breathing can be really dangerous.”

Gordon says you should keep your pet hydrated, don’t leave them out to long, and watch for any unusual signs they may show.