Avoid cracked paws, frostbites and itchy paws in wintertime.
I do not know about your dogs, but my dogs love winter and the snow. When winter comes, my dogs spent a long time outside, and it is difficult to get them in.
Yes, my dogs have from time to time cracked paws and frostbites, as well as chemical burns.
Most of the time, it is not so severe, because I do take precaution and protect the paws of my dogs.
When a dog has a cracked dog paw pad it is not fun for your dog it hurts and it burns. It is like when you have a cracked heel.
Dog’s paws can be very sensitive. You never know how much salt and other chemicals are thrown onto the streets, sidewalks and footpath by the people and the city. Just to melt the ice and make the walking safe for us humans.
It is like with your car before winter comes you bring it to the garage and get the underbody protection.
When you have dogs, you know that not every solution is suitable for dogs. Some can tolerate the dog shoes, and some like my dogs hate it. They will chew so long on it that they are shredded in pieces and not useable anymore. They will not stay on for long.
There are some tips and products you can use to keep the paws of your dog protected. You have to decide what suits your dog, as you know your dog best.
Protective Balms for cracked and itchy paws before and after treatment.
There are many protective balms available in most pet shops or at Walmart. You can use some human products like Vaseline or Petroleum Jelly.
My recommendation what I frequently use and it helps. I use the is the Dog Paw Protection Cream Wax from Mushers, I love the Cream Wax from Mushers as it is specially made for outdoors and it comes in a 200 gr.and 454gr. Cream box. There is plenty of other available please click on the link below to see the list of dog balms available.
There are other products available, and I will list here a few. All will do the trick. You might even use some human products, but I prefer the ones made for outdoor and made for dogs.
Before you start, please prep the paws of your dog?
Proper grooming is essential for your dog’s paws. Especially if your dog has a long hair coat than use a clipper ( beard trimmer with the shortest plastic guard works wonders)
A tip is to keep the hair between the paws short. The hair should even up with the paw pad. Ice balls can be painful for your dog. Well trimmed hairs around the paws make it much easier to put the paw balm on.
Dogs need grooming and trimming of their Nails.
Another part you have to pay attention to is that you make sure the whole year around that the nails are trimmed.
Especially in winter, it is essential to take care of well-trimmed nails for your dog as the snow and ice will accumulate between the paw pads and long nails force the paw to splay out.
- Apply a thin layer of balm just before you go out for a winter walk. After the walk, it is recommended that you wash and wipe your dog’s paws with a warm wet cloth to remove the snow, ice and salt.
- Apply after you dried the paws with another towel put a thin layer of balm to the paws to avoid irritation, itchiness and from drying out. Check for cracks in the paw pad and for redness between the toes.
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My Tip: When I walk with my dogs, and I use the car to go from A to B. I take a towel and a spray bottle with water with me on our walk, so I can clean off the stinging, irritated paws when my dogs go back into the car.
At home also check from time to time cracks in paw pads or redness between the toes.
I know that in stores there are different dog booties available. I am not a big friend of it as our dogs as mention before have them off in minutes, and then only parts have been left the rest is shredded to pieces.
Dog boots are available in pet stores online or near your place. Click here to see the style, and designs available.
How do those dog boots look like, they look like a sock with a Velcro strap. The Velcro strap is used to keep the sock in place.
You also can find dog boots with a synthetic leather sole what is an additional benefit of adding traction.
The dog boots protect your dog’s paws, and the dog booties help to keep your dog paws dry and prevent the exposure to salt, chemicals and deicers.
One thing you have to watch out for is that when you put on the dog boot, the strap is not to tight and constricts the paw of your dog.
I do not know many dogs who like to wear those dog booties. Of course the smaller dogs they might like it as they are pampered with dog clothing and other things so they might be familiar with it.
I have seen bigger dogs with dog clothing and it all depends on the dog if it is comfortable with it.
Every dog is different, and you know your dog best.
Why you should not bath your dog in winter too often.
In the cold winter time bath your dog as little as possible. A dog’s body produces special oils to protect their coats and skin from drying out.
When you bath your dog too often in the wintertime, you might remove essential oils and increase the chance of developing dry, flaky skin.
If you are unsure ask your Veterinarian for recommendations as your vet will know best.
My Tip. When you brush your dog regularly, it will stimulate the blood circulation, and it improves the overall skin condition.
Did you know that salt and de-icers are toxic for your dog?
Most salts and de-icers used in wintertime are not only bad for our environment but no, they are also toxic to your dog.
When I walk in the wintertime with my dogs, I try to keep them away from footpath, sidewalks and roads what has been treated with de-icers and salts.
Use for your sidewalk and your yard if you have to remove the snow and the ice environment and pet-friendly de-icers
Encourage your neighbours also to use environment-friendly and pet-friendly de- icer’s and avoid salt.
Whenever you walk with your dog on a street where they use de- icer’s, and salt clean your dog’s paws immediately after you return home with a spray bottle filled with water and a dry cloth to dry them off.
Use a thin layer of dog paw balm and rub it into your dog’s paws. This is also to prevent that your dog starts licking his paws before they are washed. My dogs chewing their paws when they are itchy.
It is annoying for you when you wanna go to sleep. Most of the time they will do it during the night.
The particles of the chemicals and de- icer’s can be stuck on your dog’s paws and can cause him to vomit.
Pay attention that your dog is not drinking out of puddles or let him eat slush.
Some dogs also get a dry cracked dog nose in winter.
I think it is common sense that when it is freezing cold outside, do not walk too long with your dog. Keep your walks with your dog short. In general, dogs can get frostbites and hypothermia just as us humans.
You can spot the mild hypothermia when your dog starts to show weakness, shivering, and lack of mental alertness…
Hypothermia in Dogs
Hypothermia is a medical condition that is characterized by abnormally low body temperature. It has three phases: mild, moderate, and severe. … Hypothermia occurs when an animal’s body is no longer able to maintain a normal temperature, causing a depression of the central nervous system (CNS).
If your dog shows signs of Hypothermia please be alert and bring your dog immediately to your vet or an emergency Center for pets.
Feed your dog in the cold winter time a bit more dog food. Why?
Dogs do tend to burn extra energy by trying to stay warm.
Sometimes it can cause dehydration in your dog. Feed your dog a little bit more during the cold weather, and you have to make sure your dog has plenty of water to drink will keep your pet well dehydrated and the skin will become not so fast dry.
Winter can be harsh, cold and long. However, you protect your dog’s paws with the dog booties, or the paw balm will go a long way to keep your dog’s paws healthy. If you worry that you overfeed your dog check out our free dog food calorie calculator.
Remember to prepare your dog’s paws first.
Winter can be tough on our dog’s feet, but proper grooming and protecting the paws by using a paw balm or booties will go a long way to keeping your dog’s feet healthy.
How do you treat your dog’s paws during the cold winter month? Do you have a DIY balm? Share with us…
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