When it gets cooler and the days get shorter again, there are a few things you can do to prepare your dog for autumn. Read here what you can do against darkness, wetness and cold.
The shorter the days, the greater the likelihood that you and your dog will have to go out at dusk or in the dark. It doesn’t seem to get light on foggy days. In addition, roads that are damp or rain-damp are made slippery by falling leaves. The braking distances of motorists are correspondingly long. If you walk a lot on streets or sidewalks, you and your dog should be equipped with reflectors: many outdoor jackets already have the silver stripes that shine in the headlights. For dogs there are harnesses and leashes with reflectors that show every road user that a person and a dog are walking here. If your paths lead you through fields or forests, a reflector is of no use. Then switch to luminescent collars and blinkies that show you and other runners where your dog is.
The first two weeks after the time changeover are the most accident-prone of the year. Because we switch with the head, not with the biorhythm. Dogs and all other animals also initially retain their normal sense of time. The evenings are particularly explosive for dog owners, because then there is a lot of game – from rabbits to foxes to hedgehogs – on the move. Problems can then arise with a dog who likes to hunt. The morning hours, on the other hand, are more relaxed, because then deer, badger and Co. have withdrawn.
The coat change is now in full swing. The thin summer wool hairs fall out and are replaced by twice or three times as many fluffy soft undercoats. In the case of short-haired dogs with little undercoat, brushing your carpet daily will prevent your carpet from getting a gray veil and light hairballs from getting caught in every corner of the apartment. In the case of long-haired dogs with a lot of undercoat, you can use the brush to prevent the undercoat from becoming matted and thus no longer able to meet the thermoregulation requirements.
In the cold season there is no chat among dog friends, no casual strolling in the confidence that the dog is already moving. Keep him busy, have him fetch, search, race against you. Now – after a warm-up phase – running next to the bike or horse, which lets all muscles work, is very good. You can also do dog sports as long as the places are still open.
They get dressed when it goes outside, most dogs go unprotected from room temperature into the damp cold. It is good if you can move freely with the muscles that are still warmed up. If you drive your car for a walk or have your four-legged friend on a leash for a while, you have to allow it a short warm-up phase before you can run around, because the muscles harden again in the cold car and when walking slowly. Very important: Dogs who love to swim and still jump into any body of water should not stay in the cold water for more than five minutes.
Dog clothes are in abundance. On the other hand, you have to look for functional clothing that really protects. Take your dog with you if you choose and try the coats on. They should be water-repellent on the outside, soft and warm on the inside. The particularly endangered abdominal area must be covered. The joints, which are barely hairy and thin-skinned, also need protection. We recommend models that have a lower jacket and an outer jacket that can be buttoned together. Then you can choose to wear just one of the garments. Also think of warm clothing and winter (waterproof) footwear for yourself.
In the car or in front of the front door there is a terry towel that roughly dries the dog that is damp or rain-damp. In addition, a towel with which you can temporarily clean muddy paws. Chilled animals that still have to drive should be wrapped in a blanket. At home, treat everyone – if they want – a warm, dry place after a walk. Most of them do post-hygiene and clean themselves again extensively there.