It’s officially spring – which means longer days, warm weather, and more time to spend with your four-legged friend outdoors! After this long winter, it’s time to prepare our homes and yard for the upcoming warm months. But – don’t forget about your furry friend! Springtime brings increasing temperatures, which means the return of health threats to our pups. Here are some tips and tricks to keep your dog happy and healthy this season.
Use Heartworm & Flea and Tick Preventative
Your dog should be on these preventatives year-round, but heartworm and flea and tick preventative are especially important in the warmer months. The warm weather means mosquitos and fleas and ticks are more prevalent – and your dog is at higher risk for developing heartworms or diseases associated with fleas and ticks. If your dog has been off heartworm treatment, have them tested by a veterinarian to ensure they are still heartworm free. And, be sure to check with your vet on the latest advancements in flea and tick prevention.
Don’t Wait for the Weekend
There is nothing quite like that first gorgeous weekend day. But, try to avoid the “weekend-warrior syndrome”, where pet owners feel the need to make up for months of inactivity. If your dog packed on a few pounds over the winter months, ease into warm weather activities. All too often, pet owners unintentionally injure their out-of-shape dogs by pushing them too far (i.e. going for a five-mile hike). They can suffer from several injuries including knee, back, and shoulder injuries. Take it easy and gradually build up their strength and stamina.
Update Your Gear
Once your dog is in shape enough to endure those long walks and hikes, make sure they have the right gear. Update their harness or collar/leash to high-quality material or grab a new portable water bowl. And, if you want to get fancy, you can purchase a dog backpack, life vest, and protective clothing. With the right equipment, springtime activities will be that more fun!
Spring Clean the Right Way
Spring is synonymous with cleaning, but before you start your cleaning spree, remember some of these cleaning solutions pose a risk to your furry friend. In addition to cleaning products, pesticides, fertilizers, and weed-killers can be extremely dangerous to your dog or cat. Don’t leave any solutions out and open and try to stick to all-natural ones as much as possible.
Help Save a Life!
Spring is also synonymous with “puppy (or kitten) season” – a time when unaltered dogs and cats go into heat. Many rescue groups and animal shelters are inundated with puppies and kittens during the spring season. If you can, foster some puppies or kittens, donate to your local animal shelter, or volunteer. Also, promoting spay and neuter in your community will help raise awareness and decrease the puppy and kitten population!
Spring is the season to reconnect with your furry friend and include them in more of your favorite outdoor activities. But, be sure to keep these tips in mind to ensure your pet enjoys a healthy and happy spring season!