7 Ways You Can Keep Your Pets Healthy and Safe this Winter

By guest blogger, Ryan Goodchild of A Pupper’s Love

Photo by ModCatShop on Unsplash

Now that the cold weather has arrived, you need to make sure your pet has the essentials to stay healthy and happy all season long. Not sure where to start? Then check out these top health and safety tips for taking care of your furkids.

Find Allergy Relief for Your Pets

Itchy pets may be suffering from allergies. Pet allergies are pretty common for cats and dogs, and can be the result of dust, pollen or even certain foods. All of the scratching can lead to hair loss and infections, so schedule a checkup for your pets if you suspect environmental or food allergies. You can also try switching your kitty to an allergen-free food to see if that helps with symptoms.

Address Your Pet’s Behavior Issues

Winter weather can mean more indoor gatherings with family and friends. If you plan on bringing your pets along you should make sure they have at least some basic manners. This can also be helpful if you want to sip your favorite fall lattes on local dog-friendly patios. If you need help with training your dog, consider reaching out to a local, qualified trainer for a consultation.

Be Aware of Signs of Pain in Your Pet

Colder weather can make your pet extra achy. Arthritis is another common health concern that tends to come in during colder seasons, and aches and pains can be particularly common for senior pets. Lifestyle changes can reduce pain and inflammation for your pet, including keeping your pet active and investing in quality beds.

Pain from inflammation, nausea and vomiting from cats with sensitive stomachs is another thing to look out for. In this case, switch your kitty over to food that is specially produced for such ailments. Ingredients in sensitive stomach cat food — such as prebiotics, highly digestible ingredients, and fatty acids like fish oil — are geared towards soothing cats’ digestive systems.

Make Sure Your Pets are Microchipped

It’s always a good idea to microchip your pet. If your pet gets away from you during a hike, a walk, or a holiday vacation, having a microchip will increase the chances of being reunited with you. This is a relatively simple and inexpensive procedure that can be priceless when it comes to protecting your furry family members.

Protect Your Pet’s Paws and Nose

You know how your lips and hands can get dry and chapped during the winter? Well, the same thing can happen to your pet’s paws and nose. If you notice dry skin or cracks on their skin, consider mixing up a protective balm. You can also add a layer of balm to help safeguard your dog’s paws against salt and other chemicals used to prevent ice on sidewalks.

Protect Your Pet From Holiday Hazards

Finally, before you enjoy any holiday celebrations with your pets, you should be aware of some of the most common holiday pet hazards. Human food may be the first thing that comes to mind, and keeping fatty meats, herbs and other risky treats away from your pets can be crucial for keeping them healthy. But holiday decor, including poinsettias, mistletoe and tinsel, can also present poisoning and choking hazards.

Ensuring a safe and healthy season for your pets is all about preparation and planning. So even if the temperatures are still hot and sticky in your area, start making appointments and stocking up on supplies as soon as possible. Then you can rest assured that your pets are healthy enough to enjoy all the fall fun ahead.

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Thank you, Ryan, for all the great info. For inspiring stories about man’s best friend, check out Ryan’s website, A Pupper’s Love.

Book Review – Becoming Future You, Mel Jolly

You’re already becoming Future You, but do you like who you’re becoming? Life coach Mel Jolly encourages us to answer that question and make the journey with purpose in Becoming Future You: Be the Hero of your Own Life. She writes with an easy, conversational style and a good dose of humor. Her personal examples really help the points she’s making hit home, and the questions in the free companion workbook help readers get clarity on their goals, dreams and desires and proactively move toward becoming the best version of themselves. At the end of each chapter is a recap followed by questions and/or action items.

Mel says, “Sometimes we create a vision of our Future Selves who is less stressed and more organized and has her act together… and then we continue to do the same things we’ve always done and wonder why she hasn’t shown up yet.” She encourages us to look at our thoughts, words and responses through the filter of whether it’s helping you become Future You, and to start noticing the difference between what Future You would say and do and what Present You is currently doing. Becoming the best version of ourselves takes work, but Mel encourages us to enjoy the growth journey and make it like an epic road trip with sightseeing destinations (your dreams) and a map (strategy).

Working to fulfill our purpose and become the best we can be isn’t selfish. Just the opposite. As Mel puts it, “It’s only in embracing your talents and desires and chasing your dreams and taking care of yourself that you fill your well. That’s what gives you joy and energy and enthusiasm, which you can then pass on to others.” She says, “Becoming Future You is not about being dissatisfied with your life and wishing it were different. It’s about listening to your gut, embracing who you truly are, and striving to become that version of yourself with joy and gratitude.”

Unfortunately, most of us carry beliefs that hold us back, and we unknowingly sabotage who we want to be in our future. Becoming Future You helps us identify the stumbling blocks that keep us from becoming the best version of ourselves and offers a game plan for overcoming them. One way of sabotaging Future You that hit home with me is committing to things in the near future that we don’t have time for now but somehow think we’ll have time for then. But Mel points out that Near-Future You is probably going to be just as busy as Present You (maybe even more so because we don’t know what unexpected things might arise), and Future You won’t thank you for putting that responsibility on her plate.

Mel poses the question, “Are you going to choose to be the hero of your story? Or are you going to use the excuse that you’re not in control and continue to let life be something that just happens to you?” I highly recommend Becoming Future You. This book isn’t just for those who feel trapped, stuck, defeated or sick and tired of surviving instead of thriving. It’s for everyone who wants to become the best version of themselves that they can be.

Purchase