Ways For Keeping Your Cats Or Dogs Comfortable During Winter

When the cold weather really kicks in, we all worry that our outdoor pets will be okay. There are a few things you can do to make sure they make it through the winter happy and healthy. A heated bowl which is controlled by a thermostat will ensure that your dog’s water never freezes.

If our feet are cold in the house what do we do? Put on slippers or socks obviously, what can our poor dogs do though? Absolutely nothing, so we have to do it for them. A kennel raised above the ground is a good idea, alternatively give them something to sleep on that is elevated above the cold floor.

Dressing up a dog is a well debated issue between dog owners. Even those who look down on it appreciate that jackets, sweaters and the like are necessary items and not fashion statements.

Generally speaking, dog clothes come in 5 sizes, so it’s highly likely that there will be some to fit your dog. They are easy to care for too and can go in your washing machine.

Health supplements taken in conjunction with the winter clothes will keep their joints supple and warm. Drafts along floors and under doors can even affect your indoor dog. There are lighter fleeces and sweaters designed for this kind of use. Even in winter weather your dog needs its exercise, and you can even get dog goggles to protect their eyes from the elements.

Don’t forget about your cat in the winter months either. They have a lot less body fat than dogs and get cold very quickly. There are some great beds for cats that are like a cave which will keep them warm in all temperatures.

Carpets keep a room warm, but if you have laminate or wooden flooring your pet will feel the cold when they are lying down through the day. A rug will keep them warmer, or even better, a heated pet mat. Both dogs and cats will enjoy sleeping on these through the day, especially if they are used to lying beside your bed at night on a carpet. You Can Ensure That Your Beloved Dogs And Cats Can Maintain Their Warmth

The worst thing that you can possibly do is leave your pet outside so that it’s exposed to the elements. Frostbite is nasty at any time, but can be extremely painful for dogs. It’s attacks their tail, feet and ears so make sure they have good shelter.

If you have a cat, see the ways that a  Petsafe cat door might be a great idea as well.

Is Pet Insurance a Good Idea?

If all dog owners had to worry about were a checkup, yearly shots, and an occasional injury, it would be hard to justify the cost of pet insurance. After all, premiums can run into the thousands of dollars over the life of your pet.

But the fact is that today, pet medical care rivals what’s available to humans in complexity and cost. For example, an MRI is a diagnostic tool once reserved for humans but is now available for pets as well–at an average cost of $1,200. Sophisticated procedures such as radiation therapy, can start at $900 and quickly reach $5,000.

And it’s not as if it can’t happen to you. Statistics show that one out of three pets will need emergency treatment every year, and two out of three experience at least one major health crisis in their lifetimes.

Given these catastrophic and skyrocketing costs, and with monthly premiums as low as $10 for some pets and plans–they average around $35–pet insurance may be a worthwhile option for you and your animals.

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Declaw No – Scratching Post Yes!

The issue of declawing has been a hot one for about 20 years now. The main reason for declawing is to stop a cat from scratching furniture, people and priceless rugs. There is no medical reason to declaw a cat, though, and the declawing removes the front of the toe which can affect a cat’s balance.

It’s simpler and more humane to teach your cat some claw manners instead. Set up scratching posts around the house, including the hanging kind which you can attach to the the couch. Use catnip to attract your cat. You can also teach your cat to leave the furniture alone and to keep her claws in when a person is holding her. It just takes a repetitive “No!” when the claws come out and treats when she obeys. A little time training is a much better alternative.

Indoor Cats Get Fleas Too!

You may think your cat will never become dinner for fleas but a surprising number of indoor-only cats have problems.

Since cats are fastidious groomers, the fleas may go unnoticed until you see your cat doing lots of scratching or you notice some hair loss due to bite allergies. If you have a dog who goes outside, even if he’s on flea prevention he stands of chance of being a flea carrier. You can also bring fleas in on your pants or socks. Another way they gain access is through the window screen, especially if your cat enjoys sitting by a first-floor window.

To do a flea check, place your cat on a white towel and brush. If you see black specks (flea debris) then it’s time to get some flea control.

Can Your Waste Basket Kill Your Cat?

If you don’t think of the waste basket in your bathroom as anything to worry about as far as a cat is concerned, think again!

Dental floss is a form of string, and we know that cats cannot resist playing with it. Once they put it in their mouths, their natural instinct is to swallow, and what goes down cannot come back up.

There may also be razor blades, or safety razors, but once in the paws of a curious cat they no longer represent “safety;” they pose serious danger.

Keep your waste basket secure and check for any other items that may be dangerous to your cat.