Various seasons come with their baggage. They have multiple characteristics that affect both humans and animals. As a result, you need to go the extra mile in keeping your dog in good condition. Many parts of your dog are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia from excessive exposure to cold weather.
However, your dog’s paw is the most susceptible part, making it essential to protect it. It is necessary to consider that the paws take a severe hit, especially from snow, ice, and chemicals from the sidewalk. In short, the overall cold weather does not go down well with them at all.
Since your furry friend is not protected the same way humans wear boots, you need to go the extra mile to keep the paw pad in a good state. The good news is, you can do this in several ways. This article will explore several ways to keep your dog happy and in good condition during the winter:
- Keep Your Dog Hydrated
Hydration is essential for both man and animal. It makes more sense, especially in the dry and cold weather, since their paw pad gets complicated due to lack of water. As a result, make sure your pup has easy accessibility to water. When going on long walks, go with a bottle of water, not relying on snowballs.
You can also consider getting a humidifier, besides giving them constant access to the water supply. Hydration will prevent irritation, which might cause injury in the winter.
- Wash their Paws after going on walks.
The road gets considerably unpleasant in the winter. As a result, people use chemicals on the street, driveways, and sidewalks to dissolve snow. While your boot protects you from these harsh chemicals, our furry friend is not so lucky. This makes it essential to wash their feet after every trip in the winter.
You can put a bowl of warm water with a towel by the door and clean the paws after the trip. As an alternative, use a wipe on their paw or spray with water at the bathtub. Make sure your dog does not lick the salt or whatever chemicals. It could trigger stomach upset.
If you want to use a chemical on your property to melt ice, consider non-toxic ones. Antifreeze might seem attractive to dogs with their attractive taste so that it could leak it. However, this is not good, as it doesn’t take much to cause fatality to your dog.
- Consider Protective Wears
The furs and purrs of your dog might not be able to handle the harsh weather. The winter season presents many extremities that could be too much for their coat and fur to handle. As a result, you should go the extra mile in protecting seniors and puppies by using coats, boots, etc.
There are boots and coats designed specifically for dogs. This will protect their paws from cracking, drying, frostbite, etc. Such extra protection in coats and boots can give them the needed warmth and keep them safe. Besides, it can also protect their paws from dangerous antifreeze and other chemicals used on the road. There are dog sweaters with hood that can give them adequate warmth.
- Moisturize and Groom Your Dog’s Feet
Your dog needs special care during the winter. As a result, make sure to give her a spa experience, especially when the temperature gets cold and harsh. Your puppy is exposed to various unkind elements, which could make her extremely uncomfortable. While going for a walk, she could have an ice pack between her feet. With this, walking might be difficult for her, and with time, the paw pads might crack. In extreme cases, the situation might trigger frostbite.
However, you can take care of any discomfort associated with winter by grooming and keeping her feet moisturized. This comes down to regularly cutting her nails, as long nails can easily break when running around in the snow. If your pup also has hairs between her toes, always keep them short to prevent snowballs from getting trapped in between them.
- Consider Using Paw Balm
For every trip outdoors during the winter, make sure to take precautions by rubbing paw balms on your dog’s paw. The idea is to serve as a barrier and reduce any damage arising from chemicals and salt.
On returning from the walk as well, make sure to reapply the balm. The balm will ensure their skin is soft and moisturized, preventing cracks in the cold, unfriendly month. You should get such balm at the pet store or online stores.
- Reduce their Time Outside
The winter period could get excessively unfriendly at times. As a result, the best bet is staying indoors, for man and animals. This is important to avoid frostbite – an extreme condition of low temperature, making the blood travel to the body’s core to keep warm. Sadly, this can happen to almost every part of your dog.
As a result, keeping them entirely protected by limiting their time outdoors will help. When going for walks, make it short and wear the essential clothing. Keep all sick old dogs and puppies indoors to reduce the risk of hypothermia. You can keep their spirit high by stimulating them with various activities. Hide and seek, fetch, etc., is a good idea.
Surviving the winter is possible for your dog. However, you will need to go the extra mile to keep your dog comfortable, happy, and healthy. Here are tips to have a happy and friendly dog in the winter.