Keeping Your Dog Safe in Winter

Winter can be a fun time for your dog, but it can also be a dangerous time, especially if your pet spends a lot of time outdoors. You may not realize that there are many hazards you need to look out for to keep your dog safe in the winter. Here are some things you should keep in mind to keep your pet safe all winter long.

Not all dogs like the cold

Some breeds, like Akitas and German Shepherds, have naturally thick winter coats that keep them warm. Other dogs may not have enough fur to keep them comfortable in cold weather. If your pet doesn't seem to love being outside when it's cold, you could try putting him in a warm jacket or sweater. Or, you might simply limit his time outdoors. Just increase your indoor play time to make up for the lack of exercise.

Protect your pet's feet

Dogs have tough skin on the soles of their feet called pads. These pads are great for protecting their feet, but they're not perfect. Ice and frozen snow can cut the pads of your dog's feet and the spaces in between the pads, too. If your pet gets ice or snow wedged between the pads, they could also get frostbite on their feet. Dogs aren't immune to hypothermia, either. Minimize your dog's exposure to icy, rough terrain or put booties on them to help protect their feet while they're out frolicking.

Watch for toxic chemicals

Common chemicals around where you live could be deadly for dogs. You may know that antifreeze is a danger, but did you know that walking on pavements that have been de-iced could also make your pet sick? The chemicals in many commercial ice-melt products can make your pet seriously ill. If you walk in places that use these chemicals, clean your pet's feet as soon as you get home so he doesn't lick the chemicals off his paws.

Watch out for ice

Frozen ponds can be tempting for your pet, but thin ice is a real danger. Keep your dog away from frozen ponds and pools, and make sure you keep your pet's nails trimmed. There may be frozen puddles or other icy patches that could prove tricky for your pet if his nails are too long.

Bark Busters can help you train your pet to behave well this winter. To speak with a trainer, call 1-866-418-4584 or type in your postal code on the main page to find the trainer nearest you.

Tags Dog safety

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