The following is a guest post from Ashley Spade. Ashley, in addition to being Sir Winston Pugsalot the First’s favorite human, is a blogger and law student. She volunteers at her local pug rescue in between studying and training for triathlons (sometimes at the same time).
Keeping your pet safe and sound this year is a task worthy of topping everyone’s to-do lists! Whether you’re looking to make your entire home safer, protect your pet from chilly winter weather or work on their general safety, these few tips should help you get started and point you in the right direction.
- Home Security: If you don’t already have a security system, or if you’re not using the system you already have, learning to properly utilize it can keep you and your pet safe round-the-clock. And, while you may not consider ADT important to your pet’s safety, a lot of the features offered can help you monitor your home while you’re away. You can change lights and temperature or monitor cameras to keep an eye on your pet and keep them comfortable. You can also ensure that your doors and windows are closed and know for sure that your pet is inside.
- Monitor Exposure to Cold Weather: Be sure that you’re not giving your pet too much outdoor exposure. While pets definitely need to get some fresh air here and there, limiting exposure to about thirty minutes at a time and giving your pet a chance to go inside and warm up or drink water is the best way to make sure they get exercise, but stay safe. Be sure to give animals with short or fine fur a sweater or booties to keep them warm while they play. Also, if your pet has arthritis, check with your vet about what you can do to ease their pain, as it increases in colder weather.
- Proper Identification: If you don’t have your pet micro-chipped or if you’d rather not, having them outfitted in a collar and tag with your contact information is a must. Always be sure their tag is properly affixed before going out to play, or for a walk.
- Pet Insurance: Investing in pet insurance is a great way to ensure that your pet is healthy, safe and happy. You can choose your coverage and be reimbursed for charges, have medications covered and be sure that your pets are protected in the event of an accident.
- Outdoor Pets: If you have an outdoor pet, take extra care before the bitter cold weather sets in to make sure their shelter is in good condition. Check for leaks, cracks that let wind in or any moist spots. Change out the bedding and maybe include a heated floor mat or generous bed of straw for warmth. Avoid using heat lamps as these can be dangerous or catch fire. Check throughout the winter, especially during severe weather to be sure that their accommodations are holding up. Check their water frequently to be sure it doesn’t freeze over and invest in a heated water bowl if necessary. Outdoor pets will also need extra food calories to help sustain their body temperature, so keep them well fed.
With these tips, you’ll be on your way to keeping your pet safe, happy and healthy all year long and be sure to get started sooner rather than later!