Hot dogs, cozy bunnies – keep them warm this winter

Keeping pets warm this winter is essential (photo: Adobe)
Keeping pets warm this winter is essential (photo: Adobe)

PDSA veterinary nurse Nina Downing advises: “The colder weather can cause discomfort for some pets, especially those who are young, old or frail. Fortunately, there are some simple steps we can take to help our furry friends during the winter months.

“It can be comforting to bundle up in our coziest sweaters and jackets when the cold weather hits, so it’s important to remember that our furry friends may be feeling the cold too and may need extra blankets or bedding for to crouch. a good idea to raise their beds off the floor to keep them out of drafts.

“Choosing an igloo bed or creating a cozy den for your furry family member, using blankets, pillows and bedding will help them retain their body heat, not to mention give them a safe haven to escape outdoors when it’s particularly cold!

Our furry friends need to be kept warm in winter (photo: Adobe)

“When temperatures drop, some dogs, especially older, sick or thinner-coated dogs, may find it useful to wear a waterproof coat to keep them warm and dry. Make sure the jacket fits well and is not restrictive, otherwise it could rub and cause injury or make them feel cold if moisture gets underneath.

“Fit and healthy dogs are unlikely to need extra layers unless the weather is extreme, in which case it may be better for you and your dog to wait a while for the weather to pass before venture out!”

As for winter walks, Nina urges: “As temperatures drop and frost and snow sets in, make sure you take extra care when walking your dog. Snow can be painful when it accumulates between pets’ toes or forms clumps on their fur, while salt and sand can also irritate sensitive paws. So it’s a good idea to check your furry friends’ paws when they come inside, remove any snow or ice that might be clinging to them, and rinse off the salt and sand.

“You can also keep pets safe as the nights draw in by using a reflective lead or LED collar to improve visibility. A lot of winter coats have reflective strips built in, so once your pet is ready for a new jacket, you can reuse the strips from the old one and tie them to the lead instead of buying a replacement.”

Take dogs for a winter walk (photo: Adobe)

For smaller pets such as rabbits and guinea pigs, Nina suggests moving their hutches to less exposed areas, covering them with breathable blankets or an old piece of rug for shelter, making sure the heat stays in, while keeping the home well ventilated. Wrapping his bottle in blankets, old clothes, or even bubble wrap. (photos: Adobe)

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