There is a natural shift that occurs during autumn—with the changing leaves come shorter days, and before you know it, we are in full-blown sweater weather.
With less sunlight and cooler temperatures, this can take a real toll—in humans, this can be experienced as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). While there is limited research on whether pets can suffer from SAD like people, the annual winter conditions do have an impact. Cooler mornings can shorten walks and darker evenings can leave your pup missing their summer adventures. Here are some helpful tips for your four legged friend to be active and happy during the winter months!
Let in the Sunshine
With fewer daylight hours, it is key to make the most of it. Open your curtains during the day. Consider placing your pet’s bed next to a window so they can soak in the sunlight. For our furry friends living in northern climates, artificial full-spectrum lights and lightboxes can be a helpful sunshine supplement. This small adjustment can be helpful for people and pets, so make sure to let the light in!
Stimulating Indoor Playtime
When the weather outside is frightful, have a few go-to options for indoor playtime. Engaging toys and chews are tried & true solutions for boredom. Our Raw Recreational Bones are long-lasting, entertaining, and delicious treats that can help pass the time! Small Bones are suitable for cats and small dogs, while larger bones can be served to dogs based on their size. Remember, when serving bones indoors, place them on a surface that can be washed or disinfected.
Understandably, our activity levels may dip during this time of year so we celebrate any and every kind of movement with our pets. If your pup acts as your shadow, take a couple of extra laps around the house. For homes with stairs, try climbing an extra flight with your canine cheerleader. If you have a cat, don’t underestimate the power of a cardboard box obstacle course. Finally, our go-to is the classic laser pointer which is a cardio workout just within reach.
When to go to the Vet
If your pet exhibits unusual behavior that is more than just the winter blues, make sure to call your vet, so they can rule out or treat any underlying health problems.