Keep Your Small Pets Warm This Winter
Winter can be a tough and dangerous time for our small animals that live outside, so it’s important that we take the time to ensure our pets are as comfortable as possible and have everything they need to help them survive the dry, cold weather. So, to help you out, we’ve put together some quick and simple tips on how to keep your furry friend warm and safe this winter.
A Warm Home
It’s important that your small pet has a safe and cosy home for the winter. Firstly, you should consider moving your pet indoors or into a shed where they can keep warm. If this is not possible, hutches should be placed against the wall of your house and raised slightly off the ground, as well as being waterproof, dry and well-ventilated. Keep an eye out for dampness or water marks inside your pet’s home and carry out any necessary repairs as soon as you can.
Cover as much of the hutch as possible with old blankets or carpets, as this will keep in the extra heat. However, it’s important that you leave a small gap so they can still see outside and don’t feel trapped. In addition, ensure your pet has extra bedding for added warmth, especially when the weather is colder outside. Straw on top of layers of newspaper will provide a cosy bed for a rabbit, whereas other animals such as rats may prefer to sleep in smaller environments such as tubes etc. You could also consider buying a snuggle safe heat pad for your rabbit, as these are great for providing extra heat during the night.
Food & Drink
Animals tend to use more energy through the winter months, so we recommend providing your small pet with plenty more food and water as this will give them the extra energy they need. If your pet uses a water bottle, consider purchasing a cover for it to protect against frost and ice. If this doesn’t help, a heated bowl may be a better option.
If your rabbit is being quieter than normal or eating very little, this is a sign that they could be ill. It’s important to check your small animal for illness and injuries on a daily basis as they may not always show signs of this. If you suspect your small pet is in pain or you recognise that they are ill, consult a vet immediately.