If you glance at a calendar this week, you’ll probably notice that Daylight Savings Time is upon us! If you aren’t reminded by your calendar, you’ll certainly find out through the internet, television or radio. Unfortunately, our pets don’t receive the same time change reminders that we do. All they know is that one day Mom or Dad is waking them up an hour early for breakfast and then they’re expected to “go” when they weren’t even ready to get out of bed yet. Following are 3 tips on how to spring forward with your pets:
1. You can help them get ready for the big day by starting now. Wake them up 10 or 15 minutes earlier every day and they’ll adjust gradually. That’s a lot less stressful than a whole hour’s change at once. They’ll probably still notice the change, but being the loving and tolerant friends they are, they’ll make allowances for our eccentricities. After all, what dog or cat do you know that doesn’t have a heart as big as Texas?,
2. If your best friend is very young, or very old, you should also allow for extra walks (if a dog) and maybe an extra treat or two during the first few days, since their eating and eliminating schedules are going to be a bit confused. Extra petting and snuggles will help a pet of any age adjust better to change of whatever kind; so will a little extra playtime.
3. In order to help your pet adjust more easily to changes like this, vary their routines by a few minutes every day. Animals have remarkably good internal clocks – dogs especially know almost to the minute when to expect the mail carrier and that mail doesn’t come on Sundays! If you vary routine activities like meals and walks by as much as an hour each time, they will learn to be more adaptable and less stressed when things happen to upset their routine.
Try these tips and next year you’ll likely be “springing forward” and “falling back” with your pets easily! For even more tips and expert advice to help you care for your best friend, contact us. We love helping other pet lovers almost as much as we love caring for your pets!