an­i­mal magic

Rouse Hill Times - - NEWS - Dr Anne Fawcett

SLEEP hy­giene is the term used to de­scribe the habits we cul­ti­vate to pro­mote a good night’s sleep. But we’re not the only species that suf­fers from the ef­fects of in­som­nia or in­ter­rupted sleep. Com­pan­ion an­i­mals can also ben­e­fit from sleep hy­giene – es­pe­cially as they get older.

● Stick to a rou­tine. Putting an­i­mals to bed at the same time each night can help.

● Keep the pet’s rest­ing environment quiet and out of high-traf­fic ar­eas in the house­hold. Pro­vide a com­fort­able bed.

● Sep­a­rate in­com­pat­i­ble pets at night, such as an el­derly dog who is an­noyed by a play­ful kit­ten.

● If an an­i­mal suf­fers from a painful con­di­tion such as arthri­tis and can­not get com­fort­able, see your vet. He or she may ben­e­fit from treat­ment.

● Ex­po­sure to nat­u­ral sun­light can help main­tain a night-day cy­cle.

● En­sure your pet gets enough phys­i­cal ex­er­cise dur­ing the day. It helps to en­sure they are tired enough to sleep.

● En­sure your pet is on good flea con­trol. Fleas bite through the night, and con­stant wak­ing up to scratch de­prives an­i­mals of a rest­ful sleep. I’ve seen prob­lem be­hav­iours in pets dis­ap­pear with the in­sti­tu­tion of de­cent flea con­trol alone.

Like us, an­i­mals that sleep well are much hap­pier.

Dr Anne Fawcett is a lec­turer in vet­eri­nary

science at the Univer­sity of Syd­ney and a vet with Syd­ney An­i­mal Hos­pi­tals In­ner West.

Read her blog: smal­l­an­i­

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.