If you are living in an area that has cold and snowy winters, you may find yourself wondering about your dog's safety and well-being during the cold season. When there is snow on the ground, there are many precautions that you can and should take to keep your dog safe and healthy when they are out and about in the snow. Find out some of these precautions you should take to help your dog. Then, you can be sure they have the best experience possible with winter this year.
Get Your Dog a Coat
Many dog breeds are not built for particularly cold weather. Dogs like Siberian huskies and even corgis have thicker fur with several layers that are designed for colder climates. However, most breeds have thinner coats that can only withstand cold so well.
Because of this, you may want to get your dog a jacket or a coat to wear when they go outside during the winter months. This can help to keep their core (their torso) warm which will help to keep blood circulating and flowing as it should in spite of the cold. Be sure they wear the jacket if there is snow on the ground or if the temperature is low (generally, about 40 degrees or lower would be a good threshold).
Invest in Booties
Dog booties are another important apparel item to get your dog in the winter. These booties are designed to protect your dog's paws from the snow and the cold. They can help to prevent frostbite and ice buildup between the pads of the paw. Your dog does not need to wear their booties inside but should have them on when they go out in the snow and cold. You can then set the booties out near a heating vent to get them warm and dry for the next excursion outdoors.
Clean Your Dog's Paws
If you opt not to use the booties or only use them occasionally, you will want to be sure that you regularly clean your dog's paws when they come in from the outdoors. Snow and ice can build up on the fur in between the pads of your dog's paws, for one thing. This can cause serious discomfort for your dog and can even lead to frostbite or at the very least cracked skin on the paw pads. Road salt and sidewalk de-icers can also get stuck between the pads. These products can be toxic to dogs and can also cause pain and irritation. So, wipe off and clean their paws when your dog comes inside to avoid these issues.
Knowing these tips to help your dog stay safe and healthy in the snow, you can be sure your dog has the best winter possible. Contact a health service, like Berlin Township Animal Hospital, for more assistance.