With spring in full swing and many people stuck at home, you might be looking for ways to get out with your pup. You might also just be looking for ways to shake off the dust of winter and get your mind and body ready for the coming warm weather.
Whatever you’re looking for, here’s our list of 7 new healthy habits for your dog in spring 2020.
Many people are currently stuck at home. A stay-at-home order can be pretty dull, but in many places, it is necessary. The drawback of being forced to stay home is that you can develop cabin fever. When you do get out, you might want to plan to hike or run all day just to get out your pent-up energy. Try to resist this urge!
Overextending yourself isn’t right for you or your pup. You or your dog can strain muscles or ligaments, and that will just pup you exactly where you were, on the couch. Once the weather is warm enough to be out for extended periods, resist the urge to do so. Take it slow, add a little more each day. Eventually, you and your dog will build the stamina to get a full day’s exercise.
Along with preparing your body for warmer weather, be sure to stock up on any supplies you’ll need. Think about what activities you and your dog will be doing together and make sure you both have everything you’ll need to be safe and have fun.
Things to consider would be:
- A good harness and leash
- Portable food and water bowls
- Fun toys for catch
- Floating toys if you’ll be in the water
- A dog backpack
Those are just a few ideas. Of course, what you bring with you and your dog will vary depending on the activities you two plan to do. Think about everything you’ll need to have fun and be comfortable.
Careful with the Cleaning
With spring comes Spring cleaning. Most people are ready to clean out their homes and spruce up a few things. When you are cleaning, be sure you take care to prevent your dog from getting a hold of your cleaning supplies.
Remember that the cleaning supplies you keep locked up out of reach can be tempting to a dog who doesn’t know what the chemicals can do to them. If you’re mopping up the house, get your dog in their crate or outside. If you’re disinfecting countertops, be sure not to put your cleaner on the floor. Whatever you’re doing, be sure to take care that your pets do not come into contact with anything that can be potentially harmful.
Pay Attention to Your Lawn
Just like when you’re cleaning indoors, be sure your dog stays away from anything harmful outdoors as well. If you are going to be putting down fertilizers, herbicides, or insecticides on your lawn, be sure you do not let your dog go out on it right away. Most manufacturers have printed minimum waiting periods before allowing pets or people on your lawn. Be sure to follow those directions.
While you are waiting for your lawn to be safe for use again, take your dog around the block or maybe drive to a forest preserve together. It’s an excellent opportunity to show your dog a new place while keeping them safe from any potentially harmful chemicals you may have used around the home.
Watch for Bugs
You might be waking from your winter slumber, but everything else is too. All sorts of animals and bugs are about to become fully active, so keep an eye on your pets when they go outside.
The buzzing of bees can be too much to resist for a curious dog. A bee sting or spider bite isn’t going to be fun for your dog or you. Dogs can have just as adverse an allergic reaction as humans to insect bites. If you suspect your dog has been stung or bitten, best to call your vet to see what they recommend. They might suggest an anti-inflammatory cream or an antihistamine. Or they might have you bring your dog in.
Take Preventative Care Seriously
It’s easy sometimes to forget that monthly chew or medicine application. But our dog’s preventative care is necessary. This is especially the case as it becomes warmer. All sorts of bugs and insects are starting to emerge and are looking to a nice place to set up home.
Make sure your dog is caught up on their worming medication, and it’s not a bad time to check the last time you applied an anti-flea or tick medicine too.
Making sure your dog is up to date on their medicines is vital to keeping them healthy.
Check Your Paperwork
Along with keeping your pet’s medicines current, you should also check their paperwork. Are all of their shots up to date? Has your dog been microchipped? This will help any shelter that picks your dog up to identify them and return them to your home.
Also, are your dog’s tags up to date? Do they even have your current phone number and address? This might be easy to overlook, but if you’ve got a new number, you may have forgotten to get new tags. Keeping everything up to date will be proper insurance if your dog ever sneaks away. Plus, it’s usually required at most dog parks.
With warmer weather just around the corner, it’s sometimes easy to get ahead of ourselves. Take the time to make sure you and your dog have everything you’ll need to make the most out of Spring 2020.