Keeping our animals safe is a concern we all have in common. Whether it is a dog, horse, cat, bird, hamster...well you get the point. This month is National Animal Safety and Protection Month, this is a great time to focus on any concerns or changes you can make for your 4 legged friends to stay safe throughout the months and year. Safety and protection can look different for each individual animal. Think about how this can pertain to your animals and individual situation.
Environment...A secure location, whether it be inside or outside. this is so important so he doesn't get out and get lost. Do you have a fence, barn, stall, kennel etc. If he roams free or has a doggie door, then is he trained to stay in a certain area or come when he is called? Does he know his name, the sound of your voice, whistle or smell? With the environment also comes the question; Is your pet comfortable and happy? (Didn't think i was going to through that in did you?:)) You know your animals better than anyone, so watch for signs your 4 legged friends give you. Comfort and happiness come in all types of emotions, barking, neighing, growling, crying, playing, jumping for joy...you get the point:) These are all great questions to ask yourself when thinking about their environment.
Identification for your animal...this is so important in case he does get lost, taken or Mother nature gives us some bad or scary whether. ID tags, Electronic Chips, and collars are just some of the options we have to help get our animals back to us. Remember we cannot alway's control the upset of our environment, but we can prepare for it in advance. When creating an ID tag etc, make sure you have all updated information on them at All times! You know the basics, Name, Phone Number (cell or home or both), Address (at least the City). But you can also add Your name, any medical issues, or "Call my mom":)
Training...Yes I said training! Classes, a training book, or video's. All of these are great suggestions, but the key is to start Now and stay Consistent! Having a trained animal is going to save you a lot of time and frustration, not to mention a bond that can form between him/her and you! When circumstances of calling out to your animal are needed, you and he will be so glad you went through training together. Just having your 4 legged friend respond to you can be life saving and prevent him or her from getting lost.
Ok now we have some basics, so let's take the next step and think about what types of activities are going to happen throughout the month, season, or even year that will effect our animals...
We are officially in Fall now and the Holidays are coming. Which can mean, family, friends and visitors could come to your home. So you have covered the Environment and ID and Training Process, now the Emotional part...What does this mean for our 4 legged friends? Stress, excitement, tension, and even bad behaviors could appear. How are you going to keep your pet from getting stressed out or overly excited? You can look at using calming products, keep him/her in a quiet space (maybe with some music), or training focused on interacting with multiple people at one time.
Throughout the year we have indoor/outdoor activities, holidays, events, family/friend gatherings, all kinds of things happening. If we can keep in mind that everything we do and prepare for effects our 4 legged friends...that is the first step to keeping them safe, protected and Happy!
Enjoy your animals, protect them, and love them.