As the winter season approaches, temperatures drop and humans don their warmest clothing. For our canine friends, precautions should also be taken in order to keep them both safe and warm during the cold days of winter. So, what is a pet owner to do? There are a few ways that you can take precautions to keep your dog safe and healthy no matter how cold it is outside.
When going for a walk outside, take your dog’s breed into consideration before heading outside for an extended period of time. Perhaps you could shorten the length of the walk with your dog to ensure they are not exposed to the elements. Or, if your dog has a shorter or thinner coat, outfitting them with a sweater or coat could be the best route. Booties for their sensitive paws are another way to ensure their feet are protected on snowy, wet, or cold surfaces while outside or on a walk. This can also keep harsh chemicals, like those used in salt, off of the dog’s paws.
It’s also important to keep a close eye on your dog while on a walk. Senior or older dogs might not be nearly as agile or light on their feet during a walk and therefore are at risk for slipping or falling down. This simply means choosing your walking routes carefully. After a walk is over, gently cleaning your dog’s belly and feet is a good idea. This will help remove any water, salt, or ice, that make have found its way to your dog’s body. Likewise, it’s a good idea to keep baths to a minimum during the winter so they can keep their natural oils which will help prevent their skin from drying out. Naturally, a good snuggle after a walk is always a great idea!