5 Tips to Help Prepare Your Dog for Autumn
Fall can be such an exciting time for our dogs. There are crunchy leaves to chomp and pumpkin patches to visit. Family gatherings where they might be lucky enough to sneak a table scrap. And of course, plenty of cozy evenings in, snuggled up to their favorite human. It’s a dream!
That said, with every season change, there are challenges for your pup, as well. Shorter days, rain, and an end to the summer frolicking with their school-aged buddies can certainly make the pumpkin spice season anything but sweet for your dog.
Not to worry. The team at BreezeGuard has put together a list of preparation tips that will make sure your dog looks forward to all the good things autumn has to offer!
#1: Adapt your exercise routine
One of the most difficult aspects of fall for a dog is the change in routine. With the school year starting and the daylight hours shortening, there’s less time to give your dog the same amount of exercise they were used to in the summer. And it will take some creative thinking to make sure that your pup gets a good daily workout.
In general, your dog will adapt better to the new routine if they’re able to get their exercise in the morning. This could mean waking up a little earlier, donning your reflective gear and taking your dog for a walk. Or, you might find a dog park or open field near your child’s school so that you can give them a play session after dropping the kiddos off.
If you can’t find time for your dog until after work, scout out the dog parks with floodlights or indoor dog play facilities in your area. If you have a fenced outdoor area at home, invest in some fetch toys that light up so that your pup can keep an eye on the prize even when it’s dark.
And we get it. Fall is a busy season, and it can be difficult to give your pupper the playtime they really want. If you’re struggling, try to commit to shorter outdoor sessions daily instead of waiting until the weekend to tire them out completely. This will prevent injury and help regulate their energy levels throughout the week.
#2: Stash some surprises in the toy box
If your dog will be spending more time alone this season, you can help the time fly with brand new toys. Puzzle toys and interactive toys are a great way to keep your dog engaged and mentally stimulated while you’re away. And, they’ll make sure that your pupper doesn’t decide to take a more destructive route with your furniture!
In addition, make sure to comb through their existing toys and take out any that are damaged or may pose a risk during unsupervised play. If your dog is a chewer, for instance, replace plush toys with more durable ones.
#3: Plan your weekend adventures
You’ve set your dog up to be as comfortable as possible as your family transitions back to busier work weeks. But, it’s still a good idea to show your doggo some extra love during the weekend! Bring them along to your local dog-friendly farmer’s market. Schedule a family hike with your dog. Or, invite a fellow dog owner over for some much-appreciated pupper playtime.
And remember that whenever you load up your pooch for an adventure, BreezeGuard Screens can keep them safe and sound in the backseat. It will be especially important to keep your dog secure if they’ve got pent-up energy from a long week waiting for the weekend!
#4: Share the (dog-friendly) fall harvest
Your mind might be on pumpkin spiced chais and pecan pies, but that doesn’t mean that your dog can’t enjoy some fall favorites of their own. In fact, many of the fruits and vegetables in season between September and December are dog-friendly and make excellent DIY treats for your furry friend.
Pumpkins, squash, and sweet potatoes, for instance, can be boiled (with no added salt or seasoning) and added to your dog’s food bowl or puzzle toys. Apples, pears, cranberries, blueberries, carrots, and peas can be served as fresh, bite sized treats.
Remember that fiber-rich foods should always be given to your dog in moderation to avoid stomach upset. A few small bites of these autumn fruits and veggies is a good way to get your dog into the spirit of the season!
Another benefit of having these dog-friendly treats on hand is that they make for great table-scrap alternatives. If you’ll be inviting friends or family over for a fall feast, keep your dog from gobbling down unhealthy-to-them foods like seasoned turkey and mashed potatoes by having a small tupperware of dog-friendly foods at the ready. When the tupperware is empty, no more morsels for Fido! He’ll thank you later!
#5: Keep them up-to-date with their flea and tick treatment
Autumn is full of tantalizing smells for a dog, from piles of wet leaves to wildlife activity. All your doggo wants to do is put their snout to the ground and start sniffing. Keep them safe while they follow the scent by updating their flea and tick treatment. You can also inspect them for any hangers-on after they’ve come back from a nice hike or walk through a grassy area.
Is your dog looking forward to fall?
Even though there are some changes to get used to, there’s plenty for your pup to look forward to with the new season! So, bundle up, keep an eye out some crunchy leaves, and pick out the perfect pumpkin with your fall-loving furbaby at your side!