Think ahead and get your dog ready for when the clocks go back an hour

Posted by Betty. November 30th 2015.

The end of British Summer Time or Daylight Saving Time can be a shock to the system for most people – and it can be the same for your dog.

Many dogs benefit from well-established routines as it helps them feel safe and secure.

So, when the clocks go back on October 25, consider the effect it will have on your pet and try to make the move as smooth as possible.

Make sure your dog is ready for when the clocks go back an hour by getting them prepared

Let sleeping dogs lie

Just like people, one of the main things the clocks going back will affect is sleep patterns.

Adjustments to the clock mean light and sounds will be different and these are the main cues your dog uses to judge what time of day it is.

When the clocks go back, it means we “gain an hour” in the morning, for example 6am becomes 5am. If your dog is used to getting up at 6am, you may have to bite the bullet and get up at 5am with him or her, particularly if the first thing they do is go out to do their business.

You can help your dog gradually get used to the adjustment by making them wait an extra 20 minutes over the course of three days. Then, hopefully, you’ll get your extra hour in bed.

Be patient with your dog – if he or she has an accident, don’t be too surprised or angry. It will take them time to get used to the new routine.

Like your dog, this Dachshund puppy may not appreciate the change to their body clock when the clocks go back an hour


Feeding time

A similar approach can be applied to food. Dogs are crepuscular animals, which means they are naturally most active at dawn and dusk.

Dogs are typically good at coping when their feeding times change – but they will soon let you know when they are hungry.

Just like with sleeping, ease your dog into a new schedule. If he usually has breakfast at 7am, make them wait an extra 20 minutes for two days, then another 20 minutes for two days after that until, by the end of the week, breakfast is being served an hour later – and it’s still 7am!

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