We never like to accept it, but it’s the time of year where we start noticing the evenings getting shorter each day, and the chill of winter on the horizon. Just because it’s getting colder and darker though, it doesn’t mean walking the dog is not just as important. In fact, a crisp Autumn walk on a sunny afternoon is hard to beat!
With the nights drawing in however, comes additional dangers when out walking the dog in low-light conditions, making it even more important to take measures to keep us and our dog’s safe when walking.
Walking the Dog – Respect the Reflect
The best way of ensuring you and your dog will be hard to miss in low-light conditions is by using reflective clothing and apparel. A huge range of reflective products can be found on the market from dog coats and collars to simple and budget-friendly high-vis vests for owners to wear. Quality is important too, and choosing products with industry leading reflective components, such as 3M reflectors, means that the reflective safety can be assured when walking the dog.
Walking the Dog – Lighting the Way
Combining reflective clothing with a light source for you, and your dog, is both an extra safety measure as well as a great way to find your dog if they have an adventurous tendency, especially in darker environments such as woods or unlit paths. A light that will easily attach to your dog’s collar means they should be noticeable even from far away. It’s worth exploring different light colours too. Red light for example has the greatest wavelength of any colour on the visible spectrum, meaning it can usually be seen from greater distances. Using a blue light is also said to occasionally have a preventative effect on accidents, due to its association with emergency services.
Walking the Dog – Safety Simplified
Above all else though when considering walking the dog in the dark, simple solutions and common sense prevail. Walking with someone else is a great way to make your twilight excursion extra-safe, there’s more eyes to look out for any dangers, as well as extra hands in case any emergency interventions are needed. Another easy to implement tip is to walk against oncoming traffic, particularly if you are walking along unlit country roads, so you can spot any vehicles heading your way, and they can spot you!
Staying alert too is an obvious solution, but it can be difficult with the modern-day distractions of our mobile devices. Avoiding using headphones too will prevent additional distractions, and keeping phone use to only essential moments will allow you to focus on your dog and keeping them safe!
These tips should help when walking the dog during the changing seasons, and with the added danger that low visibility brings during the winter months, dog insurance is also an important consideration given the increased possibility of road-based accidents. We suggest taking out a good quality pet insurance product to help protect your pet should any unfortunate accidents occur.
Find out more about Vetsure’s Lifetime Pet Insurance options.