Keep Your Dog Safe This Winter - 4 Things To Remember

Winter weather isn't just harsh on you. It can also be especially harsh on your dog. From brisk cold to ice salt coated sidewalks, it takes extra diligence to keep your furry friend safe. Learn what some of the common dangers are so that you can better protect your pet.

Monitor Cold Weather

Heat isn't the only weather related concern animals face. Extreme cold can also be fatal for pets. Sure, their coats do provide an extra layer of warmth, but when you're outside with a coat on and you're still freezing, chances are – your pet is too. Even when the temperatures aren't extreme, if you have a dog that suffers from a preexisting condition like arthritis, leaving the pet out in the cold can exacerbate their symptoms and make them quite uncomfortable.

Perform Extra Grooming

Take extra steps to keep your pet protected by having them groomed for winter. First, start by having the excess hair trimmed from the bottom of their feet. During the winter, ice and snow can get trapped in the hair on the bottom of their feet, which is known as snowballing. While it won't cause injury, it can be very uncomfortable. It's also wise to have their nails trimmed. When their nails are too long, this can make it harder for them to keep their balance on slippery surfaces.

Pet Proof Your Home

If you have an outdoor dog, chances are, your pet will be spending more time inside your home during the winter. Make sure you have pet proofed the place. If you're using a space heater to warm your home, make sure it's located in an area where the animal can't easily access it. Should the dog touch the heater, they could suffer serious burns. It's also important to ensure the chemical cabinet is locked and safety gates are installed around any areas you want to keep the pet out.

Keep Their Paws Clean

During the winter, the average homeowner loads their driveway and walkways up with rock salt to melt the ice. If you use these products, make sure you're keeping your pet's paws clean. Rock salt contains a number of chemicals that irritate and dry out their paws to the point they crack. Additionally, if your pet should lick their paws, they could ingest these dangerous chemicals. Each time your pet comes in from outside, wipe their paws clean to prevent long-term exposure.

The more proactive you are about keeping your pet safe this winter, the better. Make sure you are keeping safety a priority all season long. Talk to a local emergency animal clinic for more tips and information.

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