The warm, sunny days will be perfect for long walks and adventures with your dog, bringing out the excitement out of both of you. However, spring is also a season when different threats lurk around, waiting for your loyal friend. Fortunately, you can take several simple steps to prepare your dog for spring and ensure their happiness, health and well-being.
Prevent fleas, ticks and heartworms
Not only are fleas, ticks and heartworms irritating, but they can also endanger your dog’s health. If left untreated, they can reach high infestation levels and even cause death. Thus, it’s of the utmost importance that you take preventive measures and protect your pet from parasites. Apart from bathing and combing your dog regularly and checking them for these pests, you can also give them preventive medication. However, it’s important that you consult with a veterinarian before giving your furry friend meds. Other preventive steps include washing their bedding regularly, vacuuming your home and introducing plants, such as mint, sage, lavender, lemongrass and basil, that act as pest-repellents.
Beware of seasonal allergies
People aren’t the only ones who suffer from seasonal allergies. However, seasonal allergies in dogs typically manifest themselves as skin irritation, a condition known as allergic dermatitis. If your dog is suffering from allergies, they will start scratching more or even biting and chewing their body parts. This may consequently lead to hair loss, inflamed and sensitive skin, open sores and scabbing. Another common sign of allergies in dogs is a problem with ears as an allergic response. This can cause ear scratching, head shaking and hair loss around the ears. Furthermore, you should also keep your eyes open for increased redness of your dog’s eyes, paws, oral tissue and other body areas, a running nose, coughing, sneezing, etc. To mitigate this problem, you should keep your home allergen-free, give your furry friend frequent baths for an instant relief and keep their immune system at an optimal level. A vet may even prescribe antihistamines if needed.
Mind the cold
Although spring brings lovely sunny days, it’s still not warm enough for your dog to dive into a lake or river. Your furry buddy can catch a cold or develop a more serious health problem, such as lung or bladder infection. Apart from preventing your dog from swimming, you need to learn to recognise possible signs that they are cold. A dry nose and skin, cold ears and body, excessive sleeping, shivering, trembling, curling up, seeking shelter and lethargy or restlessness can all be indicators that your furry friend is cold. You need to provide them with a warm environment, massage them to get the circulation going and get them moving to keep them warm.
Help them shed winter weight
During winter, your dog has probably eaten heartier meals, which has resulted in a few extra pounds. While for people this can be just a minor nuisance, for dogs, this can put more stress on their bones, ligaments and joints. Thus, it’s important that you help them get in shape and shed the extra weight. If it’s still too cold for playing outside, you should start by regulating their diet, lowering their food intake and giving them healthier treats. On warm, sunny days, make sure to spend as much time outside as possible.
Dog-proof your backyard
Before letting your dog outside, you should check your backyard for any hidden dangers to ensure your buddy’s safety. First of all, you shouldn’t leave your dog alone in the backyard for longer periods of time, so make sure to check on them regularly. You should make sure that your fence is tall enough and doesn’t have any holes. You should also line the fence with rocks so that your dog can’t dig their way out. Furthermore, check your yard for rusty nails and other hidden dangers. Finally, you should make sure that your dog has enough water and a comfy, shaded spot while outside.
With these simple steps, you can get your dog ready for spring and ensure their health and well-being.