We all start to take longer walks with our dogs now and take them on days out. Build up their exercise gradually as like us they may be lacking fitness after the winter and could injure themselves if they do too much too soon. It is a legal requirement for all dogs in the UK to be microchipped so make sure your dog is chipped and your contact details on the microchip database are kept up to date. Also your dog should wear a collar and tag bearing the owner's details whenever he is out in public. The sun can be quite intense even in the Spring so do not leave dogs in cars on hot days. Your dog may spend longer in the garden now, so check your fencing and gates are secure both to prevent your dog escaping and to prevent your dog being stolen. Keep an eye on your dog in the garden as dog thefts from gardens are on the increase. NEVER tie your dog up outside a shop – every day we see stories of dogs being stolen in this way. Always keep your dog on the lead in fields where there is livestock. Chances are they will have young this time of year, especially lambs. Also be aware that birds like pheasants and swans nest on the ground so don’t let your dog disturb the nests. If you are gardening or doing DIY, keep any tools safe from dogs, especially puppies. Do not use slug pellets to protect your plants, as these are tasty but toxic to dogs and can have fatal results. Be lungworm aware,
Lungworm can be contracted either by dogs eating slugs and snails (yes, some do), or from drinking water from a bowl where a slug or snail has been, or picking up a toy that a slug or snail has crawled into. So don’t leave toys in the garden overnight – keep them in a snail proof box, and regularly clean out any water bowls in the garden.