Getting Ready for Spring: Tips for Pet Owners

by VetDepot on March 20, 2013

spring tips for pet owners editedMarch is officially spring and that means spring-cleaning and freshening things up for the longer and brighter days ahead. This is the perfect opportunity to refresh all your pet’s paraphernalia too!

You can start by washing all pet bedding and throws. If beds have lost their support or are looking a bit shredded, now is a perfect time to shop for something new and take advantage of new styles and designs that are ultimately aimed at pet comfort.

The same goes for the toy box. Many toys are washable and can be placed in the washing machine on a delicate cycle.  Those made from rubber and harder materials could probably do with a good soaking in a disinfectant (this is something can you can do year-round too). However, toys that are broken especially if they have stuffing and squeakers inside them, should be thrown away and replaced. If your pet is particularly fond of a particularly toy, it’s a good idea to stock up so that you can replace regularly and keep the fun and games going in full swing.

This is also the time to check through your pet’s medications, supplements, flea and tick products and various toiletry items to ensure that they are still fresh and haven’t passed their expiration date. It’s important to remember that supplements and even products such as sunscreen lose their effectiveness after a while and need to be thrown away and replaced.

Spring in pet terms, also marks the start of the official shedding season to get rid of thick winter fur. Shedding is a normal and natural occurrence for cats and dogs. It’s how they remove dead hair from their bodies and maintain their coats in top condition (along with good nutrition).

In the wild, members of the cat family shed twice a year now, in the spring to get rid of thicker winter fur and, again, in the fall to prepare for the grow-in of the next winter’s thicker coat. Shedding is largely influenced by daylight and, more specifically, by the number of hours a dog or cat is exposed to sunlight in a day. This is known as a photoperiod. Of course the amount a pet sheds will vary significantly from breed to breed.

You can speed things along with a deshedding tool and help remove with special deshedding shampoos or with special alcohol-free wipes formulated specially for cats. Controlling shedding will also go a long way in keep your home looking spring-cleaned too.

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