Your daily routine is likely full to the brim with responsibilities. Whether it’s work, school or family obligations, you always have something you need to finish, even as you check things off your to-do list.
If you have a pet, you know just how inconvenient this lifestyle can be. You may have to leave your furry family member in your apartment for hours at a time, ignoring their big, sad eyes as you close the door. Though they’re always excited to have you back, you want to make sure they’re comfortable while you’re gone.
This is doubly true in the winter, as temperatures drop and your place cools down. So what should you do to make sure your compawdre is properly situated? Read these six tips to learn more.
Wipe Off Their Paws
Dog owners go outside every morning at least once to make sure their pup can relieve themselves before they’re alone. It’s nice to see the sunrise and hear the birds sing on sunny, quiet mornings, but it’s a different experience in the rain or snow.
When you get back in the house, don’t forget to wipe your dog’s wet paws off with a towel. You can also try using booties or paw balm in the cold months. Wet, salty paws lead to uncomfortable chills and keep your pets cold in your home. The same rule applies if you have an outdoor cat that you let indoors before going to work.
Buy a Heat Lamp
People who love their small animals should think about buying a heat lamp. Most reptile owners will already have one installed above their pet’s enclosure, but other animals need warmth, too.
If you have a bunny, they must maintain a body temperature between 101.5 and 103 degrees, which is hard when your apartment falls below 72. Other indoor pets, like guinea pigs and hamsters, also benefit from the warmth of heat lamps on cold winter days.
Check for Drafts
Does your HVAC unit turn on often to heat your apartment? If so, you might have a few drafts you never noticed before. Light an incense stick and hold it around the edges of your windows and doors.
If the smoke bends out of the way, you’ve found your air leak. Caulking or a door draft stopper will solve the problem and keep heat inside.
Dress Up Their Wardrobe
The next time you’re at the pet store, find some sweaters to add to pet’s wardrobe to keep them warm. Tons of options exist for dogs and cats that will make them comfortable without overheating.
If your pet hasn’t worn clothing before, watch them for the first few hours to ensure they don’t feel panicked by the new sensation.
Inspect Your Fireplace Flue
Some rental units have fireplaces, which increases the chances of cold air leaking into your apartment. File a maintenance request to ensure professionals come out and inspect the fireplace flue, which could be the answer to why your home gets cold so quickly.
Hang Thermal Curtains
Window leaks can let cold air in and heating out. An easy solution is to hang thermal curtains, which reduce heat loss by 25% when they stay closed during the day.
They’ll also minimize how far cold air leaks into your home, which keeps your HVAC unit from running overtime.
The best way to keep your pets warm this winter is to try out different tips to see which are the best for your home. A sweater might be all your dog needs to warm up.
If you’re ever unsure about what to do, call the management office to ask for advice.
Dylan Bartlett, aka, “The Regular Guide,” writes about a broad variety of topics on his blog. Check out Just a Regular Guide for more, or follow Dylan on Twitter @theregularguide for frequent updates!