Is it cold where you are? Last weekend we had a major snowstorm come through our area. Dumping more than a foot if snow on us. Tuesday we were under and Winter Weather Advisory for freezing rain. This weekend we are expected to get another major dose of snow.
Whether it’s icy outside now, or you’re anticipating colder weather later this season, it’s important to make sure you’re keeping your pooch safe when the temperature drops.
Time their walks to avoid the coldest parts of the day.
Your dog will need to go outside briefly to use the bathroom at their normal times, of course. But if you’re planning to take them on a longer walk, try to avoid the early morning and evening hours, which are likely to be colder. You may want to start with short walks until their body gets used to the cooler temperature.
Protect their paws.
Make sure to keep the hair on your dog’s feet well-trimmed to prevent ice build-up. You should also wipe their paws off after a walk, in case they’ve come into contact with rock salt or other chemicals. Since sidewalks are not a priority you may be walking on the street. If it’s particularly cold or your dog has sensitive feet, they may need booties or paw protectors.
Watch out for antifreeze.
Your dog can come into contact with the toxic substance from residue in the street. Antifreeze is sweet and appealing to dogs, but extremely dangerous, even a teaspoon of it can cause life-threatening kidney problems. So keep a close eye on where your pup is licking.
Remove snow and ice carefully.
Snow can be great fun for dogs to play in. But it’s your job to make sure it doesn’t pose a hazard.
Watch out for signs of frostbite and hypothermia.
Even when you’re doing your best to protect your pooch from the weather, they may still be vulnerable to frostbite and hypothermia. Signs of frostbite include skin that is pale, grey, or unusually hard. Signs of hypothermia include excessive shivering, cold ears and feet, and lethargy. If your dog is displaying these signs, get them inside and warm them up — and call your vet right away!
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