You are outside in the backyard. The clouds are over head, the wind is chilly and there is a slight dampness in the air. You can't wait to get back inside to sip your favourite hot beverage and sit in front of the heater. It's the winter blues - and you are not the only one. Your four legged friend is right by your side and can't wait to get back into their bed or favourite resting spot. Here are some tips on how to help your pet fight the winter blues.
Do I have to go outside?
If your pet spends the majority of their time outside then proper outdoor housing is a must. There are fantastic ranges of kennels for dogs and enclosures for cats that offer water, rain, frost and wind protection. Make sure the housing is placed away from the seasonal elements in a position where they feel secure and cosy.
Whether inside or outside make sure your pets bedding is raised off the floor and away from cold drafts including the door ways of kennels. Fill an outside kennel with warm dry blankets that are washed regularly.
Feed me, feed me!
You'll probably notice your pet's appetite will increase during winter. This is especially true in outside pets that will use more energy to keep warm. Keep a close eye on your pet's weight ensuring they are nourished, but not overfed from too many winter snacks.
A very woolly winter's day
Particularly cold winters days can be uncomfortable for slim, younger or older dogs. Try placing a hot water bottle (with warm not hot water) into your pet's kennel. This will soon make a comfortable place to rest. A caution for pets who love to chew, only use warm water and if you have any doubts there are other options such as heating discs and pads. Ask us for more information.
Get my lead!
There's nothing like a walk in the park and some aerobic exercise to get rid of the winter blues. Rug up and head out for your pet's favourite activity. Not only will your dog love you for it, you'll be feeling fantastic in no time too.
Creaking bones and awkward moves
If your pet is struggling to get out of bed then it could be a sign of arthritis or an age related disease. Often these problems are provoked by cold weather and we recommend 6 monthly check-ups particularly if your pet is showing signs of ageing. Find out more about senior pet care including arthritis here.
Quick tips for older pets
- Create a warm haven where your older pet can curl up and avoid draughty areas.
- Elevate their bed up off the cold floor. Particularly concrete and hard surfaces.
- Provide thick warm bedding and use heating products where possible.
- Maintain your pet's joint mobility by providing regular exercise (20 minute daily walks on level ground)
- If you believe your pet is in pain please ask us for veterinary advice. Advancements in veterinary medicine make treatment for the ailments of age related disease possible.