Take your coats, sweaters and beanies out. The temperature has dropped, and everyone is rugging up for the cool months ahead. As you get ready for the cold, have you thought about how you’re preparing your pets for winter?
Just like humans, your furry friends are also vulnerable during the cold season. They may prefer winter over the scorching heat of summer, but icy weather can be unsafe for cats and dogs. Although their warm and thick winter coats may have appeared, they can still get extremely cold and suffer from frostbite or hypothermia.
How To Know If Your Pet Is Feeling Too Cold?
Preparing your pets for winter means that you have to be aware of what they are feeling.
Are they comfortable?
Are they shivering?
Do they look lethargic?
Do they seem ill?
Pay attention to these signs that tell you your pets are uncomfortable in the bitter cold.
- Struggling out of bed – If your pets happen to have arthritis, the cold winter may provoke extreme pain in their joints and bones.
- Shaking and shivering
- Hunched posture with a tucked tail
- Whining and barking
- Looks for places for shelter
- Lifts paws off the ground
Signs of Hypothermia in Pets
- Muscle stiffness
- Slow, shallow breathing
- Lack of mental alertness
- Fixed and dilated pupils
- Stupor-like state
- Loss of consciousness
If you suspect your pet is ill, take them to your veterinarian right away.
Tips On Preparing Your Pet For Winter
Load Them Up With Protein And Omega 3s
The months prior to winter, give them foods rich in Omega 3s or essential fatty acids. This will help their coat to grow thicker. Add protein to their diet and increase the amount of food intake to help keep their fur thick.
Relocate Bedding To Warmer Areas
Look for warmer areas in your home, preferably off the floor. If your pets are used to sleeping on the bare floor, provide them with a thick, soft blanket or a mat where they can lie down and keep warm.
When temperatures are freezing, opt to have your furry buddies inside even if they are outside pets. If they insist on being outside, ensure that their kennels have a flap that can block out the wind.
A Hot Water Bottle Can Do Wonders
The cold weather can be particularly uncomfortable for younger and older dogs and those with no hair. Place a hot water bottle (fill with warm water, NOT boiling water) inside their kennel. If your dogs are fond of chewing, use heating discs and heating ads to warm up their kennel.
Preparing your pets for winter is extremely important because we always want our fur babies to feel comfortable. It is also a particularly wonderful season for every pet parent because the cold weather is another great excuse to cuddle with your dogs and cats. They will definitely love the extra affection too!
Read more on how to take care of your pets…HERE.