dogsDogs typically love spring due to the increased time they get to play outside. It is a welcome change after spending the winter cooped up in the house, so they really do enjoy being able to spend more time outside in the warm weather playing with you! It is important to remember that warmer weather means that there are additional health concerns that need to be addressed.

Despite this some pet owners do not give heartworm preventatives in the winter so spring is a good time of year to make sure your dog has been checked for heartworm and is current on his heartworm preventative medication. The cost of heartworm preventative medication is a bargain when compared to how much it costs to treat heartworm disease.

In the spring the warmer weather means more bugs. Mosquitoes will start being active in the climates were they take the winter off, and this means that heartworm prevention medication should be used to help protect your pet. This is an important step to remember in the preventative care for your pet. You never know when mosquitoes will start coming out or how long they’ll stick around so be sure to have your pets up to date.

Mosquitoes aren’t the only bugs that you need to watch out for with your pet. Fleas and ticks will both be coming out with the warmer weather as well. There are a variety of products to help keep these pests away from your pet. Consult a vet to find out which ones will work best for your pet. Prevention is much easier than correcting an existing problem so being vigilant is critical.

With all of these preparations for spring it is also a great time to check out your pet’s vaccination records. Dogs for example spend much more time around other dogs in the warmer weather so it makes sense to be sure their vaccinations are up to date every spring to help decrease the likelihood that they will contract an infectious disease.

Spring for some people means it is time to plan and start your garden. Selecting plants that are safe for dogs will go a long way in preventing toxicities from occurring. Keep in mind that some dogs can enjoy digging as much as we do so avoid planting toxic bulbs such as hyacinths, tulips, daffodils and certain lilies. Fertilizers and mulch can be toxic as well so store them in an inaccessible area like a shed when not in use and do not allow your dog in the garden area.

With spring generally comes spring cleaning. Be aware that many household cleaning products are harmful to dogs so follow instructions as posted on the label and store all chemicals out of reach when not in use.

With spring rains come spring mud, keep your dog’s feet dry and your house clean by keeping a towel near the door and perhaps in your car as well.
Spring means fun times for dogs (and humans) so pick up the leash and go for a walk or hit the dog park. You are bound to notice a little spring in your dog’s steps.