Squirrel Appreciation Day is coming up January 21st! Does your dog or cat perk up when they spot a squirrel? These fluffy little rodents are quite fun to watch, though of course Fido and Fluffy are more interested in catching them than in observing them. A Spring Hill, TN veterinarian talks about our furry friends’ squirrel obsession in this article.
We always advise keeping kitties indoors, where they’re safe from cars, traffic, and other hazards. Cats can and will hunt squirrels, which is just another reason to keep your feline pal indoors. However, Fluffy will enjoy having a spot where she can sit and watch squirrels. Make your kitty a comfy window seat with a good view, and hang a bird or squirrel feeder in her line of sight.
Squirrels probably would vote against this one, but one fun way to celebrate would be to get Fido or Fluffy a cute squirrel toy. Just be careful if you get one with a squeaker. Some dogs are experts at removing these. That can be very dangerous, as those squeakers do present choking hazards.
It’s probably safe to say that if you walk your pup every day, you come across squirrels regularly. Our four-legged friends definitely perk up when squirrels run out in front of them! Fido has been known to jerk the leash out of his humans’ hands and lunge for his tiny nemesis. (A good leash is a must, but it’s also important to work on obedience training.)
Many of our canine companions are known for their squirrel hunting skills. Some pups that are the most driven to hunt squirrels include the Mountain Cur and Treeing Cur, as well as many coon hound and bird dog breeds. Cats, of course, also will hunt squirrels, given the chance. (We recommend keeping Fluffy indoors, and just offering her some squirrel toys instead.)
One thing squirrels have in common with Man’s Best Friend? A love of peanuts! If you’re feeling generous, you can scatter a few nuts for your squirrel buddies. As for Fido, he should get his treat in the form of peanut butter. Choose a brand that does not contain xylitol, though: it’s toxic to our canine friends.
Do you have questions about your pet’s health or care? Please reach out to us, your local Spring Hill, TN animal clinic, anytime!