The Winter Solstice is a turning point in many ways. For those in the Northern Hemisphere, it’s the shortest day of the year, meaning the days are going to start getting longer! But it’s also the astronomical start to winter, which is dependent on Earth’s position in relation to the sun.
- Animals in the Wintertime from Animals of the Pacific Northwest (November 2017)
Wintertime has its effects on all living creatures and on the plants around us. Like other mammals, humans rely on light for our internal clocks and shorter days means our understanding of time gets thrown off a bit. The internal clocks for some animals are affected by other measures like movement but for us humans, it’s primarily dependent on light.
Because of the longer nights, you might be feeling more tired and you might notice that your pets are feeling more tired too. The good news is that with the colder and shorter days, cuddles and naps are more than acceptable! For some breeds, the colder weather might be difficult to handle but for others, they might thrive in snow or cold temps. Chihuahuas, for example, will definitely need a sweater during this time of year but Great Pyrenees and Bernese Mountain Dogs are going to do well with their thick double coats.
It can be easy to focus on all the bad things about winter (almost no daylight, cold/frosty mornings, etc) but there are plenty of great things too. Time with family (whatever your family might look like), your favorite people, and pets can be amazing. Watching children and dogs play in the snow always makes me smile. Both Rooster and Milo just loved the snow so while I wasn’t particularly fond of it, it did make me happy to see them so excited.
So a very happy solstice to you all and may you have a cozy winter with your people and pets.