Crawley Dog Walkers - Winter Vs Summer
Hello Friends & Pet Parents,
Winter is fast approaching and with that comes the colder temperatures, rain, sleet, snow and the worst of them all... WIND!
Having had the joys of dog walking professionally in both the summer months and the winter I thought I would talk about the differences between the 2 seasons and what is important to remember to help your dog walker (and your dogs!).
I suppose the most important element of this season change is the temperature.
During the summer we had highs of 34 C (take me back!) which was lovely for your average Joe, pop outside on your lunch break and then back into a nicely air conditioned office or shop.
When you work outside however that level of heat is a whole different story. Many dogs will not cope well with temperatures over 20 - 23 C especially not the flat faced breeds (im looking at you Smithy!)
People may not believe it but a lot of work is actually called off or greatly reduced in the summer due to the intense heat.
On the flip side of this we have the winter, where temperatures will easily drop to below 0 in the coldest weeks. The scorching summer is quickly forgotten and suddenly you are wondering if you even have toes anymore.
This colder temperature is also an issue for certain dog breeds, the ones with short fur, smaller dogs and skinnier dogs (greyhounds, whippets etc)
To combat this owners will often put their dogs in coats, cover ups or even onesies! This can help your dogs to cope better with a short walk during the coldest periods but I think everyone can agree what a pain it can be getting an excited wriggling dog into a onesie or a coat!
Despite the extra effort it is definitely worth it if it means that your dog can comfortably go out for a walk, even if it is just a quick stroll around the block.
The next biggest change... The daily weather!
We have all been there, wrapped up on a freezing cold day, feeling like the Michelin man in your vest, t-shirt, jumper, coat, scarf, hat and gloves.
One minute it seems like a clear winters day, the next its started to rain big icy drops soaking you within 2 minutes.
The only way to combat this as a dog walker is to always be prepared with layers! During this winter I have been wearing thermal leggings and a thermal shirt, topped with a fleece lined pullover, my CDW hoodie and a raincoat. I also wear waterproof skiing trousers over my leggings and have these tucked into thermal socks and then wellies!
This means that I am well insulated, can stay relatively dry should the rain come and also... something that only a dog owner or dog walker would think about... my waterproof trousers and coat are wipeable! (Stupidly excited over this)
When I get jumped by a dog and end up COVERED in wet mud I can simply wipe it off with a wet wipe and im good as new!
As the days get shorter this year and the dark evenings roll in I cant help but think back to the sunny days, the times when I would wake in the morning, throw on some shorts and a T-shirt, grab a water bottle and my sunglasses and be ready to go!
I know this is a rose tinted view of things - In actuality in the summer I felt hot and sticky (Sun cream is very important!) and I felt like a pack mule lugging around huge bottles of tap water for me and the dogs.
However, anyone that knows me will know that I feel the cold terribly! So I definitely prefer summer to winter.
Some days you just have to layer up and look forward to spring!
I mentioned it briefly above but another winter issue that isn't too much of a bother in the hotter months is MUD.
Your dogs will get wet and muddy and no amount of planning can eliminate that fact. In order to save your floors and furniture please leave a towel out by the front door for when your dog gets home.
I have a lot of towels in my van and I do wash and towel dry every dog that I take out using my Mud Daddy (not sponsored!). Sometimes just the walk from my van to their front door can have their paws mucky again.
The second (and best) defence is always a towel by the front door so I can make sure your pooch is spotless when I leave them.
Lastly, lets get emotional and talk about our moods. There is something about a clear blue sky that just makes everything seem much more positive.
This positive outlook can be hard to hold onto when it is grey, wet and rainy outside!
One of my favourite days this past summer:
To combat the mental drain that comes hand in hand with winter its really important to find the fun in everything that you do.
Being with the dogs makes this very easy! I have come to enjoy the cloudy days as much as the sunny ones, on a cloudy day the parks tend to be less populated.
The dogs enjoy themselves just as much (sometimes more!) when the weather has taken a turn for the worst.
You witness face plants and mud slides, sometimes not just by the dogs, and you know a dog is happy when they are covered in mud and worn out from a good run!
So there we have it, the good, the bad and the ugly of Summer VS Winter.
I hope you enjoyed reading this and checking out my pictures. Have a great day wherever you are!
Bye for now,