Winter is definitely coming! Are your pets a bit more reluctant to go outside? Having a bit more difficulty rising out of bed in the morning?
With the change in weather and temperatures dropping we have to ensure we are looking after our four legged family members. We need to pay particular attention to those pets who have entered their senior years and those who live outside.
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 cozy.
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 require 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.
Keep me warm
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.
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.
If your pet is struggling to get out of bed then it could be a sign of arthritis or an age related disease. The cold weather often makes these problems worse. We recommend 6 monthly senior check-ups particularly if your pet is showing signs of ageing. Typically, most of these symptoms can be controlled through simple diet changes and/or medications.
Tips for Senior 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
If you believe your pet is in pain please seek veterinary advice. Advancements in veterinary medicine make treatment for the ailments of age related disease possible.