This winter's cold snap started very swiftly and won't finish for a while. What does it imply for your dog if Mother Nature breaks records for both warmth and snowfall? Like humans, dogs can get hypothermia and frostbite if left outside in subfreezing weather for a lengthy amount of time. Even if our dogs have hairy coats, they still cannot tolerate the cold as well as we can. Dogs should never be left outside in temperatures lower than 32 degrees Fahrenheit. These are the top 5 recommendations for keeping your dog safe this winter.
1. Make sure that your dog's nails are kept short
During the winter, it's a good idea to frequently clip your dog's nails. Dogs spend more time indoors during the winter, where there is less friction and more room for their nails to develop. Your dog may experience discomfort due to their aching feet, legs, and hips caused by their overgrown nails. Additionally, lengthy nails can keep snow, ice, or—worse—salt entrenched in your dog's paws. This may make their walks painful and chilly, and it may also dry out their paws. You may easily avoid this by regularly grooming and trimming your dog's nails.
2. Keep your dog's paws safe from salt, ice, and snow this winter
One of the simplest ways for ice to build up on your dog's paws is through untrimmed hair. Make careful to cut your dog's hair if it is poking through their paw pads. Additionally, snow can stick to their hair and soon turn to ice. There are several dog items available to assist shield your dog's paws from the winter weather. Paw coverings and dog boots may both keep your dog's paws warm and secure. Additionally, it's a good idea to avoid salt and ice melt as much as you can on your walking path. While salt is frequently spread on sidewalks and roadways to assist melt ice, it may also quickly dry up your dog's paw pads.
3. Avoid letting your dog near frozen bodies of water
Even though your dog is a pro at catching fish, that expertise is useless in the winter. Most lakes and ponds you pass while out on a stroll have thin ice and are not totally frozen over. Avoid rivers and other flowing water. These may freeze on the surface but continue to move below, leaving only a very thin film of ice behind. Hypothermia can develop in your dog in a matter of seconds if they fall into a body of icy water. Additionally, there have been far too many instances when people have lost their lives while attempting to save their sinking dog. When near a body of water, keep your dog on a leash at all times. It can support your safety and the safety of your dog.
4. Defend your dog against winter toxins
As briefly noted previously, salt and ice melt can dry out your dog's paws, which can lead to cracking, as well as create burning or discomfort in the paws. It can result in vomiting, diarrhea, and a whole host of other unpleasant symptoms if your dog decides to lick their paws when they are covered in salt. After a stroll, always wash your dog's paws as soon as you arrive home. Antifreeze is a cunning toxin that should be avoided throughout the winter. Due to the presence of ethylene glycol, it is widely recognized for being harmful to dogs. Seizures, nausea, and lack of appetite are possible side effects. Please visit your veterinarian as soon as possible if your dog consumes antifreeze or is exposed to an antifreeze leak.
5. Give your dog frequent baths
Your dog's coat may pick up whatever it touches, including salt, antifreeze, excrement, and other germs, whether you realize it or not. Because of this, it's wise to give your dog frequent baths during the winter. Hell, even all year long! Your dog can't go outside into the yard to shake away the water from their bath because it is now rather chilly outdoors. Just be sure to take a bit more time afterward using a towel or even a hair drier to dry your dog's coat.
It's a wet coat waiting to happen if you decide to walk your dog while it's snowing! In addition to dressing your dog in warm, protective gear and drying them off with a towel when you arrive home, keep in mind the prior advice. We wish you everyone a very happy walking season this winter as well as a very happy holiday season!