Keeping your pets safe this winter!

How to Keep Your Pets Safe This Winter

Dog In Snow
Keep your pets safe in Winter

The cold weather can be tough on all of us but it is especially tough on our furry friends. As pet owners, it is important to take extra care of our pets during the winter months.

Here are some tips on how to keep your pets safe during the chilly weather.


Paw Protection

Pawz dog boots

Additionally, keep the hair on your dog’s paws groomed to stop snow, ice, salt, and sand from adhering to it, tangling, or causing irritation to their paw pads. Every time you enter from outdoors, give your dog’s paws a warm water wash if they are braving the cold barefoot. Sand and salt can get between your toes and irritate their skin (or burn, in the case of salt). If their paw pads are chapped or dry, put some paw balm on them. You can apply some paw balm before starting your walk to add an extra layer of protection. Please note, however, that after your walk, you will need to wash the balm off their paws to get rid of any remaining particles. Alternatively, get your dog some boots, such as the fabulous PAWZ™ dog boots and ensure paws are fully protected.

Fur coats

Keep your dog’s coat well-groomed as a thick, healthy coat will help keep your dog keep warm in wintry weather. Trims are necessary to maintain the condition of your dog’s coat, but you do not want to cut it too short. Dogs with long hair require a lot of fluff to stay warm. Additionally, dogs with double or triple coats, such as Huskies, Malamutes, and Pomeranians, should not be shaved. Their outer coats assist them in controlling their body temperature. They are insulated by their inner coats.

Sore Noses

Even while a dog’s nose does not often get special attention during regular grooming routines, it should in the winter. The dry air can damage their skin and nails and their nose is experiencing the same effects. Your dog may feel uncomfortable and may even lose their sense of smell if their nose is dry and cracked. To help with this, use a nose balm (you can combine a nose and paw balm for this) to keep their nose soft and wet all winter long.

Provide Proper Shelter

One of the most important things you can do for your dog in the winter is to provide them with a warm, comfortable place to sleep. If your dog spends any time outdoors, make sure they have a snug, dry spot to curl up in when they are not active. A heated dog bed or mat can be a lifesaver for older dogs or breeds that are particularly sensitive to the cold.

Bring Your Dog In From The Cold

When the temperature begins to fall, bring your dog inside. Just like humans, dogs can become hypothermic if they are exposed to the cold for an extended period of time. Your dog will not be able to go outside if it is too chilly for you. Bring them inside and make sure they have a cosy, warm bed free from draughts.

Keep Your Cats Warm

A few more cosy spots around the house for your cat to snuggle up in will be much appreciated. Igloo beds are great for winter because they let your cat get cosy and hide … or a cardboard box with a towel to lie on will do.

Litter Trays/Boxes

Even if your cat regularly relieves itself outside, it is a good idea to have a litter tray  inside so they will not feel obligated to go outside in inclement weather or when they cannot make a little hole for themselves in the frozen ground. If you have multiple cats, make sure there is a tray for each cat plus one!

Keep Them Active

Just like us, pets can get cabin fever when they are cooped up indoors all winter. Make sure to give your dog plenty of opportunities to run and play, even if it is just in the backyard. If you can brave the cold for a walk or run, even better! Just be sure to bundle up your pup in a warm coat or sweater if it is particularly cold outside. 

For your cat, get them some new toys and make sure you play with them frequently. Since dawn and dusk are peak hunting hours, try to play with your cat during those times.

Stay Visible And Keep Walks Shorter

If you must walk your dog at night, take extra safety measures. To ensure you are both visible to walkers and drivers, LED collars, hi-vis leads and coats  can be excellent options for your dog.  Take a good torch to illuminate the route and after dark, keep your dog on a lead to avoid hidden dangers and to keep them safe.

Also keep your walks shorter if walking in towns to avoid chemical/salt damage to paws.

Taking Care Of Ageing Joints

Older pets may develop tight joints and arthritis, and occasionally colder temperatures can make these conditions much worse. Take meticulous care of your senior pet’s joints, especially during the winter. Check out our range of foods and products to help your pet’s ageing joints. Good foods like Nature’s Way and Canagan senior/mature contain many joint supplements like glucosamine and chondroitin.

Ice-Covered Ponds

When going for walks in the cold, use extreme caution. Excited dogs may be drawn to frozen ponds and lakes but they can easily slip through the ice (or drag you into it) and get seriously hurt in the chilly water. Keep your dog on a lead to ensure their safety.

Watch For Signs Of Hypothermia Or Frostbite

Dogs can get hypothermia or frostbite just like humans, so it is important to be aware of the signs. If your dog is shivering uncontrollably, has blue lips or gums, has difficulty walking or seems lethargic, they may be suffering from hypothermia. If your dog starts to show any of these signs, bring them inside immediately and warm them up slowly.

Frostbite occurs when the skin and tissue freezes. It most often affects the extremities, like the ears, tail, and paws. If you notice your dog’s skin is pale or bluish in colour or if they seem to be in pain, they may have frostbite. If you suspect your dog has frostbite, warm the affected area gently with warm water.

If you suspect either frostbite or hypothermia, call your vet immediately.

Be Careful With Chemicals

Anti-freeze and de-icer are used in car radiators and to stop cars icing up in winter but they are incredibly toxic for animals and can kill them. Anti-freeze and other chemicals can be tempting for dogs to lick so be sure to keep any chemicals out of reach and clean up any spills immediately. Contact your vet immediately if you suspect that your pet has consumed something toxic.

If you do use antifreeze in your car, be extra careful to use a pet-safe variety – the PDSA has good advice here on which products to use.

Check Under The Bonnet

In cold and wet weather, cats frequently find refuge under cars. Some even climb into the hood to be close to a warm engine. Before starting your automobile, always check inside to see if a furry someone has climbed inside or rap on the bonnet.

Dangerous Plants

Holly, Ivy, and Poinsettia, popular holiday plants, are poisonous to pets if they consume them. Move them out of reach or put them in a room your pet does not have access to or err on the side of caution and use artificial plants to beautify your home.

Caring for our smaller furry friends

Small animals we keep as pets, such as rabbits, guinea pigs and ferrets, are quite sensitive to the cold and temperature fluctuations. Even though a sharp drop in temperature can be jarring, there are a few things you can do to support them.

Bring Them In

If your pets are used to living outside, consider moving them inside or into a sheltered place, such as a shed or car-free garage, where they will be safe from the elements. However, keep in mind that they also require light, so make sure they have a window.

Steer Clear Of Draughts

If you are unable to bring small animals that are accustomed to living outdoors, inside, you should prepare their habitat by covering open fronts to shield them from the elements and insulating the sides of the home with newspaper or carpet and making sure they have plenty of bedding to snuggle into. Make sure that tiny animals, such as mice or hamsters are kept indoors and away from draughts of chilly air. You might need to relocate their enclosure away from windows and towards a warmer area of the house.


Just like us, our pets may require a bit more care throughout the winter. Whether you have a dog, cat or a smaller pet, it is critical that they stay secure, warm and active as the weather begins to cool. It can be challenging for both us and our pets to adjust when the days become shorter and the temperatures drop and we go into the winter but with a little extra care and attention to them, you can safely get through winter.

You can buy all the things you need to keep your pet safe in our stores in Frome and Larkhall and many items are online on our website. If you cannot find what you need on there – please ring us and we will be happy to help! Wishing you all a happy and safe winter season.

Follow us on Facebook at and Instagram and Twitter at @NotJustPets – we would love to see pics of your pets in winter!
Not Just Pets, 1 Market Place, Frome, BA11 1AG. Tel: 01373 462068

Guest Blog – Keeping Parrots safe at Christmas Time

Christmas Trees and Parrots

 This time of year, nothing beats sitting in your cosy living room, sipping a hot drink by the twinkling lights of your meticulously decorated Christmas tree.
If you are the proud owner of a pet bird, however, there is more to consider when choosing a tree than the colour scheme.
The welfare and health of your bird or birds is naturally your top priority, and so researching which options are safe for your beloved pet is paramount. We’ve turned to ExoticDirect for further information.
Real Christmas trees
Not all real trees are poisonous to birds, although some have been known to cause problems for certain species of parrots. Pine is considered a safe tree for birds, but do be mindful of any sap produced by the tree, as this can stick to your bird’s feathers.
Additionally, pine has been listed as potentially harmful in some articles, but those mainly relate to wood shavings and so not relevant to bird keeping.
Further, even if the tree itself is not harmful to your bird, many Christmas tree farmers use fertilisers in the water used to sustain their trees and the trees are often sprayed with chemicals.
Your bird is likely to want to perch on the tree, and may nibble on the pine needles while doing so. This is potentially dangerous, as pine needles are naturally prickly and can cause injury when ingested.
So, unless you plan to trek into the wilderness to chop down your own tree (good luck with that!), it is probably best to have an artificial tree, just to be on the safe side.
Artificial Christmas tree
Generally speaking, artificial trees are not harmful to pet birds, including parrots. However, bear in mind that your bird may still try to nibble on the branches of the tree, especially if it is very realistic looking.
As mentioned before, pine needles, whether real or fake, are prickly and can cause injury when ingested, so be mindful of this.
Christmas tree decorations
If your tree has been sprayed with fake snow, glitter, or any other decorative element, this can be poisonous to your bird.
Christmas lights and decorations can break and become hazardous due to sharp edges (and exposed electricity in the case of fairy lights).
Cheaper decorations may contain heavy metals, which can also be toxic; and curious birds may peck on tinsel or ribbon, which can be a choking hazard or cause intestinal blockage.
All in all, if possible, it is best to try and keep your pet bird away from your tree altogether, for the welfare of both bird and tree!
Other Christmas plants
It is important to remember that Christmas trees – both real and artificial – are not the only potential danger to your pet bird in your home.
Many plants traditionally used as part of the Christmas presentation, such as Ivy, Holly and Poinsettia can be poisonous to pet birds, as well as popular decorative flowers like Chrysanthemum and Yew.
Lastly, and some of you may find this one particularly disappointing, Mistletoe can also be toxic to some birds, so un-pucker your lips and take it off the door frame! (Or at least hang it somewhere where your pet bird cannot reach it).
A few more things to consider 
The festive season is a happy time for most humans. However, while you enjoy having friends and family over for some delicious food and a glass (or ten) of mulled wine, having to share its space with a stream of strangers can be very stressful for your pet bird. This is particularly true if any of your guests bring their own pets with them (especially the furry kind!). Do consider removing your bird to a spare room away from the party to save its nerves, and your guests from getting splashed with the possible outcome of said nerves!
Birds have a particularly efficient respiratory tract. While this is beneficial in many ways, it also means they inhale more of whatever the air in your home contains. Scented candles, potpourri and air fresheners may all make your home smell lovely for your guests, but can be very harmful to your pet bird. Cigarette smoke and fumes from cooking can also be poisonous, so make sure your bird is not exposed to them.
Even if you give Nigella Lawson a run for her money in the cooking department, most human foods (particularly those containing caffeine, alcohol and chocolate), are harmful to birds. So refrain from sharing your Christmas dinner with your pet bird, and definitely keep it away from that tin of Quality Street and the glass of sherry!
Ultimately, however careful you are, accidents can happen – even the most responsible bird owners occasionally require the services of a vet. The best way to help avoid being faced with high vet fees is to get pet insurance for your bird, before they become ill or injured.
njp hats

Here at Not Just Pets we endorse responsible pet ownership and advise all our customers on the best possible set ups and we sell all the products listed in the article. This guest blog regarding keeping parrots safe at Christmas time fits with the Not Just Pet ethos of they’re not just pets, they’re family!

We look forward to welcoming you in store soon; remember we are open in our Bath store 7 days a week!

Any ideas and suggestions you have will be welcomed. You can follow us in many ways:

Facebook                Twitter             Pinterest

 We are now on Instagram! – notjustpets Follow us and see some fantastic photos!

We run regular photo competitions, quizzes, offers and promotions on our Facebook and Twitter pages, so why not “like” or “follow” us today! 

Get in touch via any of the above, or via our website or email at or telephone us on 01225 461461. Or simply pop in, you’ll be welcome!

Christmas Gift Guide For Pets and their Owners

njp hats

With just a few days over 5 weeks to go until the big day we are feeling festive and getting into the Christmas spirit at Not Just Pets. We are stocked to the brim with festive treats and toys.

If you need some inspiration for buying gifts for pets and their owners then you have come to the right place. We have a fabulous range of gifts, stockings, outfits and accessories this year so everyone can join in the festive fun no matter what their species!

Dogs, cats and small animals can join you in the festive countdown with these fabulous advent calendars. Each day they can have a small treat that is made especially for them. Make sure you are ready for the first of December.

Reward your pet on Christmas morning with a stocking! We have a fantastic range of stockings for cats, dogs and small animals, containing treats and toys that will help them join in the festive fun.

christmas stockings

Christmas dinner time! Has your dog tried the Lily’s Kitchen 3 Bird Feast for Christmas Dinner? We have Lily’s trays for cats too. We also have the beautifully presented Christmas treats for cats and dogs that would make a lovely gift. The dog treats are in a red post box with a snowy Christmas scene and the cat treats are in a festive cracker shape with some carol singing cats.




We have a lovely range of outfits and accessories to help your pet look the part this festive season. With the best range of Christmas jumpers, reindeer antlers, Santa hats and elf costumes your pets will be the best dressed this Christmas.



luna christmas jumper

We hope this gift guide has given you some ideas and inspiration. Remember that if you do not know what to get we also sell gift vouchers that can be used in our stores on any products. Do you follow us on Facebook or Twitter? Look out for Christmas related promotions and competitions and join in with the festive fun.

We look forward to welcoming you in store soon!

Any ideas and suggestions you have will be welcomed. You can follow us in many ways:

Facebook                Twitter             Pinterest

 We are now on Instagram! – notjustpets Follow us and see some fantastic photos!

We run regular photo competitions, quizzes, offers and promotions on our Facebook and Twitter pages, so why not “like” or “follow” us today! 

Get in touch via any of the above, or via our website or email at or telephone us on 01373 462068. Or simply pop in, you’ll be welcome!

Festive fun and Christmas time at Not Just Pets

Christmas is in full swing and with two weeks to go to the big day everyone is on Christmas count down. We have put together some gift ideas for you and your pets and there is plenty in store to choose from.


We have a selection of accessories and gift ideas for small animals. Rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rats and other small animals love accessories and treats. Treat your small animal to Christmas stockings, Christmas hides and Chubes, Reindeer hamster bed and tasty chews and treats.

We have Christmas stockings available for small animals, dogs and cats. These enable your pets to join in with the festive fun in a safe way. These have animal safe chocolate and treats. The cat and dog stockings contain a fun toy and the small animal stocking contains a safe chew toy. There is a range of dog stocking depending on what your dog like. Some dogs prefer treats and some prefer toys!


Here is a Christmas collection of toys and treats for your festive feline. A lovely cosy bed, a Yeowww catnip candy cane, a festive collar, tasty cat treats, a stocking stuffed with treats, Christmas toys and Lily’s kitchen Christmas dinner for cats.

The store is overflowing with Christmas gift ideas for dogs. Here is a small selection of what we have available in store.  Choose from a selection of cuddly toys, Christmas themed festive jumpers, cosy beds, tasty chewy treats. Do not forget Lily’s kitchen Doggy Christmas dinner and treats!

We have a great range of festive fashion so your dog can get involved with the fun this Christmas! Santa coats, beards, antlers and hats. Here is Luna wearing a snowman sweater – we have sizes for tiny dogs up to German Shepard sizes and beyond!


There is so much more available in store and we look forward to seeing you this Christmas time.


You can watch our Christmas video on Youtube – Not Just Pets Christmas 2015

We hope that this has given you some great gift ideas for this Christmas. Let us know what you think! We are on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Youtube and Instagram.

We look forward to welcoming you in store soon; remember we are open in our Bath store 7 days a week!

Any ideas and suggestions you have will be welcomed. You can follow us in many ways:

Facebook                Twitter             Pinterest

 We are now on Instagram! – notjustpets Follow us and see some fantastic photos!

We run regular photo competitions, quizzes, offers and promotions on our Facebook and Twitter pages, so why not “like” or “follow” us today! 

Get in touch via any of the above, or via our website or email at or telephone us on 01225 461461. Or simply pop in, you’ll be welcome!

Keeping Pets Safe at Christmas Time

Here at Not Just Pets we think that Christmas is a wonderful time of year where you can spoil not just your family and friends but also your beloved pets. We have had our shelves stacked with fantastic festive treats for all animals but some of the special treats that we love to indulge in at this time of year are not so great for your pets!


There is always lots of chocolate around at Christmas time from advent calendars, tree decorations, selection packs, to tins and presents. These may prove too tempting for your dog and could lead to chocolate poisoning.

Chocolate contains a stimulant called theobromine which is similar to caffeine. This is what is poisonous to dogs. Different types of chocolate contain different amounts of theobromine, white chocolate the least and dark chocolate the most. In 25 grams of white chocolate there is minimal amount, in milk chocolate 44-64mg, in dark chocolate 390-450mg and in dry cocoa powder 800mg. 100-150mg of theobromine per Kg of bodyweight is toxic to dogs. So if a regular sized dog weighing 30kg eats 1kg of milk chocolate it is enough for a fatal toxic reaction.

Please seek veterinary advice if your pet dog eats any chocolate the sooner you seek help the better the outcome. 

If your dog is a chocolate fiend we sell a range of dog safe chocolate that will satisfy them! So while you tuck into your Chocolate Orange your pet dog could snuffle up their own!


Grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas. 

Many Christmas treats include these tasty ingredients, Christmas pudding, mince pies and Christmas cake! Grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are all toxic to both cats and dogs. Cooking them does not change how toxic they are. Any quantity could be harmful so seek veterinary advice if accidental eating occurs. They would make your pet very unwell and this could lead to renal failure.

Bones and carcasses

Although it is tempting to give your pets the bones and carcass from the Christmas roast they could potentially harm your pet. The bones may be too small, sharp or splinter in their throats.

Party time – strangers, noises and fireworks


There are lots of parties, dinners and get-togethers over the festive season. We all know how alcohol can make us feel – the good and the bad – A drink may be left unattended and be accidentally slurped by a pet! Make sure they have plenty of fresh water available to them and are safely settled if you are having a party. This could help avoid any accidental drinking!


The best way to avoid your pets getting stressed by extra visitors is to prepare beforehand. Make sure you can put them in a quiet, stress free room with their bed, toys and maybe the TV or radio on.


Over the New Year rather than Christmas time people use Fireworks that can cause stress to cats and dogs.

We sell products that will help calm your pets during this noisy time.

We have Pet Remedy which can be used as a plug in or a room spray and is suitable for all mammals. We also have Adaptil for dogs and Feliway for cats, this comes in a room plug in and a spray also.

We also have a Calming spot on that can last up to a week. Available for both cats and dogs.


Although some pets may like to shoot up the Christmas tree as soon as it is up, there should be no harm in them playing with tinsel and baubles just so long as they do not eat them! There are some other traditional decorations that can be harmful and these are the Christmas plants that we bring into our homes at this time such as  poinsettia, ivy, holly and mistletoe. Please make sure your pets are not able to nibble on these and seek veterinary help if an accident occurs.

Hopefully this blog has given you some information about what could potentially be a hazard in your home at this time of year. We hope that you and your pets have a wonderful Christmas and New Year and look forward to seeing you in 2015!

 We look forward to welcoming you in store soon; remember we are open in our Bath store 7 days a week!

Any ideas and suggestions you have will be welcomed. You can follow us in many ways:

Facebook                Twitter             Pinterest

 We are now on Instagram! – notjustpets Follow us and see some fantastic photos!

We run regular photo competitions, quizzes, offers and promotions on our Facebook and Twitter pages, so why not “like” or “follow” us today! 

Get in touch via any of the above, or via our website or email at or telephone us on 01225 461461. Or simply pop in, you’ll be welcome!