With the cold weather across the nation, it can be hard to stay warm. However, we aren’t the only ones who are affected by the cold. Whether you are a vet or a pet parent yourself, it is important to know the best care tips for winter weather affecting dogs.
A range of factors can influence the type of precautions you should take based on the type of weather in your geographical location. Below are those best for winter conditions with temperatures abnormal to the standard for your pets.
Protect the Paws From the Cold
Although dogs are extraordinary animals and use their paws to keep cool or warm, it is important to give them a little extra protection in the blistering cold. This includes protecting their paws. One way of doing this is purchasing booties. Although they make a strange fashion statement, they also provide better traction and an extra layer of warmth. In the winter, as you walk your dog, salt on the sidewalk has a high sodium rate and can be a danger to pets’ paws. The second is using some paw balm. Just like human hands become cracked and dried out in winter, a dog’s paws can have the same effect from the outside weather. Using paw balm can moisten their paws.
When going for a walk, a pet can get into all kinds of nooks and crannies. This may lead them to walk through unnecessary snow, ice, mud, etc. It is important to remove all of this back home from their coats to protect their hair and warm them up. When you are back from a walk outside make sure to dry off your pet, regardless if they seem wet. Running a warm towel over your dog can loosen any of the salt or other things that have been kicked up into their hair. This also will help warm up and melt any snow or ice that has attached itself.
Consider a Jacket in the Cold
For those of you with smaller pets, they often weren’t bred for the cold. Make sure to take the necessary steps to supply them with an extra layer outside. There are many affordable options of coats or jackets that can fit a range of sizes online. You may also want to consider getting a water-resistant coat or jacket too. If their coat was to get wet, it could lose the insulation purpose it is meant to serve and make your dog even colder than they were before.
Lastly, if you ever feel like the cold is affecting your dog more than it should. Schedule an exam with your veterinarian. Pet preventative care is important and can help make your dog live a happier healthier life.