Keeping your Pet Active in the Winter

If you’ve made a New Year’s Resolution to stay fit, it would hardly be fair to leave your pet out of it. So here are some ideas to keep both you and your pet active, fit and happy.

Indoors

Try playing fetch indoors. This can be hard and can require a little prep work. Consider the surface that you want to play with your dog on, carpeting may be best. Remove any valuables from the area that you’re going to play fetch with them in, and go for it.

Laser Pointer fun. Laser pointers don’t have to only be for cats. See if your dog or cat goes wild for the chase of the red dot.

If there are two of you in your home, try playing hide and seek with your dog. While the dog is seeking one person, the other should change location. When your dog finds you, reward them with a treat.

You can even play hide and seek with your pet’s toys. Hide them around the house and tell your pet to go find them.

Outdoors

Playing fetch outside. Be careful if you have old snow. Older, non-fresh snow can crust or ice up, and can become harmful to your pet’s paws. Your pet is much more likely to cut themselves on a bit of ice than if they have fluffy snow or fresh grass to play in.

You could always enroll your dog in an agility class to get them out of the house. If the weather really isn’t suitable to outdoor play, an indoor class can be a great alternative.

A trip to the pet store can be especially fun for your dog or cat. If they’re leash trained, a trip around the store can bring great sights and smells for them.

If you’re lucky enough to live in an area that has pet friendly snow areas or snow parks, getting your pet suited up for a ski or snowshoe can be a great way to get them exercised. Again consider the texture of the snow, you want to make sure you’re protecting their paws at all times. You can try using Musher’s Wax on dogs paws, or try making them wear booties to protect the pads of their feet.

A walk to the park is still a treat for your dog. Even if the park is covered in snow or deserted, there are still bound to be plenty of sights and smells for your pup.

Caring for your pet’s health becomes trickier as the days are colder and darker earlier. It may be hard to fit in a walk after work, when it’s pitch black outside. Invest in a small collar or halter light, so that you and your dog are safe in the dark. If you can slip away from the office at lunch, and take them on a walk then.

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