We change the clocks back early Sunday morning. We all can attest to the fact that we feel the effects of the change for several days or weeks. Frequently, we forget that our dogs and cats also feel the difference. They don’t have any notice and suddenly everything is an hour later…
Their biological clock is telling them it is time for breakfast or a morning walk when we are taking that extra hour to snuggle under the covers. It’s confusing and can cause unneeded stress for our furry ones.
TIPS TO ASSIST THE TRANSITION…
1. Consider making the change in 15 to 20 minute increments over a few days or few weeks. It will make the changes easier for both of you. This means altering walks, playtime, feeding, snuggle time, and your bedtime. The nice thing is that it will also help your adaption to the time change.
2. You may want to consider staggering feeding within an hour to 90 minute range and not a specific time.
3. Take extra treats with you and prepare for a barky or reactive dog for the first few days of the time change. Even the wildlife and other animals you meet are adjusting. Also, be prepared for meeting wildlife you don’t usually see.
4. Build-in extra playtime or walks in the evening to help them to relax and sleep better.
5. If your pet is taking medication, consult with your vet about how to effectively make the transition. This can be done by a simple call to their office.
6. Don’t forget to consult with your pet sitter to begin changing their planned schedule.
7. If your dog is healthy and incontinence is not a problem, don’t reward their efforts to roust you out-of-bed in the morning.
8. If your dog is a puppy or an older dog, be understanding if there is an “accident” while you are all going through the adjustment.
Get a jump on the time change and start earlier next year. In January, 2014, look at your Spring and Fall calendar and plan to start making the change a few weeks prior to the Daylight Savings Time changes. You are going to spring forward on March 9th and fall back on November 2nd.