Winter has set in earlier than expected, here in New Zealand the weather can get extremely cold – ice and snow coating our yards. As warm, comfortable and cozy that we would like it to be for us, we must care for our four legged pals the same way.
Providing warmth and comfort during these times will help them cope with this harsh weather. All pets must receive a reasonable amount of relaxation and care during both winter and summer. Any extreme conditions can harm them, especially when left outdoors at all times. It is vital to balance the exposure to all weather conditions and keeping them at ease.
Puppies and kittens may require more care and cover. If your pet is furry and fluffy, such as double coats, they might not need as much external warmth as hairless or shot-haired ones. The thick coat provides them with a certain amount of coverage and protection. For the others though, you might want to snuggle them with a fleece and some cozy bedding. Insulated kennels, crates, bedding and blankets will make a comfy, secure environment for your pet. Snugly fit Jackets while outdoors can be very helpful. Ensure none of your pets are resting on wet bedding or linen; maintain a moderate balance in temperatures. They usually relieve themselves from all the linen if it’s too warm for them.
Every animal is unique and it can be hard to judge if they like the setup created for them, allow them to ease into their new arrangement. They need to enjoy the warmth you are creating. There might be times where they wander back on to the cold floors rather then use their bed, it’s not they don’t like it. They just prefer the change. As their bodies generate a certain amount of heat, it is likely that they want some chill rolls on the ground for adjustment.
Older animals might find it harder to cope with the weather, especially if they have any health concerns. Common problems are stiff bones, arthritis and respiratory disorders. Young ones too can experience sneezing and coughs which can be prevented with regular vaccinations and by keeping them dry and warm.
In terms of grooming, avoid clipping their hair too short during winter months, its best to let it grow out as it provides them with natural coziness. A trim would keep things in place and avoid matting. When bathing your pet, ensure you blow dry them immediately and completely. Air-drying is out of the question. Paws must be cared for, see to it that they don’t get cracked or dry and add some external moisture.
Feed your pets well, they tend to use up more energy trying to generate body heat from within. Provide them with plenty of fresh water, healthy meals and a decent a mount of exercise.
As pet owners we must provide them with the necessary consideration and care. It is good to be cautious, you don’t want to stop their privilege of being outdoors, only limit it for their own safety. Always remember that if the weather is too cold for you it’s the same for your pet. Give them the comfort of a warm bed and some cuddle time.