Does your canine buddy enjoy cold weather? If you have a snow dog, like a husky, the answer may very well be yes. However, if your pooch has thinner fur, he may not be very fond of snow and cold. Regardless of Fido’s opinion on the matter, he’ll still need to go outdoors this winter, both for sanitary purposes and for exercise. Read on as a local Downingtown, PA vet offers advice on walking your dog in winter.
Snow, salt, sand, ice, and chemical de-icing agents can all be rough on dogs’ sensitive paw pads. Use paw balm or wax to protect Fido’s furry feet. You may want to clip your canine friend’s toe fur tufts, as these can collect ice balls. We also recommend getting pet-safe de-icing products.
Speaking of feet, make sure to wear shoes or boots with good tread. The last thing you want to do is slip and fall!
It gets dark early in winter, so try to take your pooch out before sunset. If you have to walk Fido after dark, bring a phone and flashlight with you and stick to safe, well-lit paths. We also recommend wearing clothes that are easy to see, and using a reflective leash on Fido.
We know, dogs love exploring, but save those excursions for summer. Stick to safe paths, and avoid any areas that could be dangerous, such as riverbanks or frozen bodies of water.
Be extra vigilant when walking your dog right after a snowstorm. Fresh snow can hide dangerous objects, such as broken glass or holes.
Designate a specific jacket for walking your four-legged friend. Keep everything you may need in the pockets. This includes things like gloves, treats, waste baggies, a flashlight, spare keys, hand warmers, and earbuds.
If Fido has thin fur, he’ll need a jacket or sweater to keep him warm on frigid days. Make sure your pet’s things fit well, and are not tight, hot, itchy, or restricting. We recommend having a few different pieces. That way, if one of your furry friend’s jackets gets wet or muddy, he will still have something to wear while it’s in the wash.
As your local Downingtown, PA vet clinic, we are dedicated to offering great veterinary care. Please contact us anytime!