Here on the East Coast of the United States we have just experienced our third snowstorm in two weeks. I know that similar weather is happening in other parts of the world and country. Here are some winter paw care tips from BARK Magazine.
  • Trim the fur between your dog’s toe pads that can get packed with snow and ice which can make walking painful.
  • Consider dog booties but ensure that they are fit correctly. BARK suggests you start with short walks and add in plenty of treats. From experience and examining what is in the marketplace,
  • Avoid frozen ponds or streams. Dogs may fall through the ice that is less then 2 inches thick.
  • Lube up. Lubricate paws to prevent skin cracks caused by cold, dry air. A thin coating of products such as Bag Balm, Musher’s Secret or petroleum jelly will do.
  • Quick wipe. Wash paws off after walks. Dogs can lick salt, antifreeze or other chemicals, plus paw pads may bleed from snow or encrusted ice.
Other helpful tips to consider  based on personal experience:
  • Dog booties can provide your pooch with additional traction both inside and outside. Before you purchase any bootie, make sure you consult with your vet. Some of the ones on the marketplace will send your dog flying on ice or snow. Have them recommend a good brand for you. Ruff Wear makes a good bootie for outside snow and ice use.
  • Walking on bodies of water. I wouldn’t take the chance of falling in. Why risk frostbite for you or beloved dog?
  • Multiple dog families-Depending on the weather, walk dogs separately or have outside playtime.
  • Check your dog’s paws upon entering your home. Keep a towel by your door so that paws can be cleaned immediately. I keep a container of paw wipes with the towel. Remember,  you do not want their paws to remain wet!
  • Sweater or Coat-I’m a coat girl. Sweaters can be loosely woven where coats are more secure and offer better coverage. Also, with a sweater you have to look out for pulls to ensure that little paws do not get caught if the weave becomes loose.
  • Veterinary Care-If your dog does not warm up, slips on the snow or ice, or looks like he or she is in pain, then take your dog to the vet for a check-up!
Have fun! Many dogs enjoy being out in cold weather and love the snow. Our pets are our responsibility and look to us for their care.

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