How to Keep Your Pet Entertained Inside This Winter

On the cold, windy, and wet days of winter, taking your dog outside for a walk along the beach or even a stroll around the block can be uncomfortable for you and your pet, too – despite their fur natural coat.
When the weather is bad, you might be perfectly alright skipping your daily walk. However, your dog needs daily exercise and enrichment to stay happy and healthy. Thankfully, there are plenty of activities you can do inside with your dog to keep both their minds and bodies active.

6 Indoor Activities to Do With Your Dog

1. Play Hide and Seek

This game will challenge your dog mentally and get them up and moving. You can hide treats, treat-stuffed toys, or your pet’s toys (it’s easier if your dog knows the toys’ names) around the house. Then tell them to go find the treats. You might need to show your dog how to play at first, but they’ll get the hang of this rewarding game eventually.

2. Indoor Fetch

If you have a hallway or a large room, you can still play a game of fetch indoors. This game is more exciting for smaller dogs or for larger dogs living in large houses. Either way, your pet will be happy to have some attention and excitement.

3. Puzzle Games

Give your dog a mental challenge and keep them busy with a treat-filled puzzle game.

4. Snuffle Mats

Snuffle mats help your dog practice their natural instinct for foraging for food in the wild and make regular mealtimes much more fun. Plus, these are a great solution for dogs who eat too fast.

5. Training

Nothing stimulates your dog’s brain while helping the two of you bond quite like positive reinforcement training. Go ahead and teach your dog – no matter how old – a new trick this winter.

6. Tug-o-War

This game isn’t recommended for puppies that are still learning manners, but tugging on a rope with your dog at the other end provides great indoor exercise.

Get Out of the House for a Veterinary Exam and Wellness Appointment

If your pet is due for vaccine boosters or hasn’t visited the veterinary clinic for a checkup in a while, we welcome you to contact Olive Branch Pet Hospital in Pensacola to schedule your pet for a wellness and preventative care appointment. This way, you can ensure both you and your dog are ready to hit the beaches this spring.

How to Keep Your Pet Warm on Walks This Winter


How to Keep Your Pet Warm on Walks This Winter

It’s windy. It’s rainy. It’s blustery. Even though your pet might be covered in fur, they can be affected by the colder weather, too. When you take your dog outside for a walk or let them out in your backyard to play, consider the following tips to make sure they stay warm and healthy this winter while still getting to enjoy the outdoors.

5 Tips to Keep Your Pet Warm During the Winter

1. Stay Dry

A wet dog is more likely to get too cold than a dry dog. In the winter, avoid splashing in the water unless you have towels for drying off and you’re heading straight home after.

2. Wear a Sweater, Jacket, or Rain Gear

Some dog breeds are more prone to cold weather than others. While a husky or malamute will feel comfortable and at home in a Pensacola winter, a chihuahua might be at risk of hypothermia. Feel free to put your short-haired dog in a sweater, but never leave him unattended while wearing clothing.

3. Mind the Windchill

Remember that the wind makes it feel colder than the actual temperature.

4. Never Leave Your Dog Unattended

On a cold day, never leave your dog unattended outside. You should always be around to keep an eye on your pet and make sure they aren’t getting too cold in the winter (or too hot in the summer).

5. Be Prepared for Frostier Climates, Too

If you plan to travel farther north with your pet during the winter, be extra-prepared for colder climates. Be mindful when walking your dog on snow or ice, do not leave your pet outdoors, and remember that salts and many deicing products are toxic to pets.

Keep Pets Healthy With Veterinary Wellness Plans in Pensacola

One of the best ways to protect your pets from the elements and from health risks is by providing them with consistent wellness and preventative veterinary care.
At Olive Branch Pet Hospital in Pensacola, we have a variety of wellness plans available for dogs and cats of all ages and sizes! Our wellness plans are designed to help you save on veterinary care while providing your pets with everything they need to live long, healthy lives.
To learn more about wellness and preventative care at Olive Branch Pet Hospital, we welcome you to contact our office today.

Keep Your Pets Safe and Healthy Throughout the Holidays


Keep Your Pets Safe and Healthy Throughout the Holidays

The holidays offer so many opportunities for having fun, celebrating the spirit of giving with friends and family, and practicing gratitude for everything that’s good in life, including our pets! To make sure your pets enjoy the holidays, too, consider the following seasonal safety tips.

6 Tips to Keep Your Pet's Safe During the Holiday Season

1. Food Safety

Remember that the several foods, drinks, and treats that humans love are toxic for pets. This includes chocolate, alcohol, caffeine, xylitol (artificial sweetener), garlic, onions, shallots, chives, grapes, raisins, and several types of nuts – to name just a few. Keep the human feast well out of the reach of your pets.

2. Decorative Dangers

Baubles, tinsel, fake snow, flocking, and electrical cords all pose safety threats to pets. Monitor your pets closely around all of your holiday decorations.

3. Travel Risks

Traveling pets can be exposed to new diseases and might require vaccinations before they leave. Additionally, traveling pets are at an increased risk of becoming disoriented and getting lost. Be sure your pet’s ID tags and microchip information are current before you leave.

4. Party Panic

The noise and new faces of parties can overwhelm dogs and cats, especially if they’re accustomed to a normally quiet household. Create a calm space where your pet can relax quietly and safely during your holiday get-togethers and keep them away from the door when greeting your guests.

5. Gift Wrap and Ribbons

Pets – especially cats – love playing with sparkly ribbons and crunchy gift wrapping paper. These items, however, pose a choking risk to pets and the dyes they’re made with can also be toxic. Instead, distract your pet with a few new toys of their own that they can enjoy safely during the holidays.

6. Poisonous Plants

Lilies, poinsettias, holly, pine needles, mistletoe, and amaryllis plants are all toxic for dogs and cats. If you do get a festive plant for the holidays, choose a festive Christmas cactus that is safe for pets and people!

Schedule a Pre-Travel Checkup and Microchipping Appointment in Pensacola

If you plan to travel with your pet this holiday season, we encourage you to schedule a pre-travel checkup at Olive Branch Pet Hospital. We can talk with you about vaccines, the pet travel health requirements for your destination or airline, and the benefits of getting your pet microchipped before you leave.
To schedule an appointment, we welcome you to contact our veterinary hospital in Pensacola today.