When the temperature drops, we bundle up, but what about our pets? The snow also impacts them, so it is important to adjust their daily routine to ensure they are healthy and happy. Caring for your pet during the winter will require some planning. Here are five tips that can help you make your dog’s winter the best ever.
- Limit Outdoor Time
Your pet may love outdoor time, but in the winter, even the hairiest of dogs can get cold. A great rule to follow when outdoors in the winter with your pet is if you are ready to come in, then they will be too. If you do let your pet out by themselves, make sure you are keeping an eye on them.
- Paw Care
Just like we tend to get cracked and dry feet in the winter, it’s important to take care of your pet’s feet. If you have a dog with furry feet, trim the hair to prevent the build-up of ice between the pads. The winter salt put on sidewalks can burn your pet’s pads and is toxic, so it is important for you to wipe their paws after a walk instead of them trying to lick it off. Putting petroleum jelly on your pet’s paws before a walk can help protect them against salt and chemical toxins.
If your pet starts to show signs of discomfort after or during walks, you should consider getting them boots or socks to alleviate their pain.
- Block Off Heat Sources
Both cats and dogs may seek out warm pockets in your house during the winter. You might find them near a radiator or a hot stove. This can be dangerous for them, because they do not know how hot they can get. Making sure these places are inaccessible for your pet will ensure that they are safe and won’t suffer from any accidents.
Having cozy bedding for your pet will ensure they are not seeking out additional heat sources. Having warm blankets available to your pet will create a cozy environment for them; a heated pet bed helps with stiff joints.
- More time between baths
Baths tend to dry out your pet’s skin. While it may not be noticeable to you, it still causes discomfort for your pet. Increasing the intervals between baths prevents the possibility of developing dry skin. Alternatively, you can consult with your veterinarian about moisturizing shampoo options.
- Adjust their Food
Due to the cold weather, your pet may not be going outside and getting as much physical activity as they usually get. If you find your pet is less active during the winter months, you should adjust their food intake to avoid excessive weight gain.
For all of your veterinary pet needs, contact us at Don Valley Animal Hospital. We understand the importance of making sure your pet is happy and healthy, and offer a warm, compassionate environment for you and your pet’s comfort.