Dog Safety – Keeping Your Dog Happy and Healthy All Winter Long

Dog safety during the winter can be tough on both you and your pooch! It’s tempting to stay snuggled up inside and watch Netflix and chill all winter, but your pet probably won’t thank you for being so cooped up. Rather than get stuck with the cold-weather blues, consider these tips to provide a healthy and happy environment for your dog, whether there’s two inches of snow on the ground or two feet!

Get Outside

While can be tough to force yourself to brave the chilly temperatures and snowy streets, your dog will thank you for a little time spent outdoors. Winter weather is also an excuse to break from routine and explore new places with your dog – check out that nearby park you’ve been meaning to take a walk through, explore the paths of a local state or national forest, or even just wander down an unfamiliar street! Both you and your pup will benefit from the fresh air and exercise.

Visit a Dog Park

If your dog likes other dogs, this can be a great way for them to burn off energy and play with their friends. Dog parks also provide a great opportunity for socialization and help to make sure that your dog is comfortable around both other dogs and other people. By the end of your stay, they’ll be pleasantly tuckered out. As a bonus, you’ll also join a community of other dog-lovers and their pets, and can make some new friends yourself!

Make Sure They are Warm

Dogs in coats may look silly, but extreme temperatures can be just as detrimental to your pet as to you. Dogs can even catch frostbite if they’re exposed to the cold for too long! Small dogs and dogs with short fur are especially susceptible to cold temperatures. Make sure your pets don’t stay too long out of doors without a little protection from the winter weather – even if that means getting them a dorky coat. Dog coats now come in all shapes, sizes, and kinds imaginable, so you and your pet can greet the world in style!

Dog Safety

Sgt. Pepperoni trying on his reversible barn coat by FabDog

Watch the Paws

Dogs’ paws can be especially sensitive during the winter. Not only do they have to deal with extreme outdoor temperatures, but they also come into contact with plenty of de-icing salt strewn all over the streets. This salt can irritate their paw pads and cause a lot of pain and discomfort. In addition, dogs often try to soothe the irritation by licking the salt off of their paws, which only hurts them further as the salt is often full of harmful chemicals. One option to protect your pup’s paws is to buy a special salve that both protects and soothes, and apply it before going outside. Another is to buy special winter booties – again, while they may look silly, they protect your pet from some dangerous stuff! Make sure to check your pet’s paws for signs of weather-related stress or damage, and contact your vet if there is a serious problem.

dog safety

Does your Dog Hate Winter, too? Have Fun Inside

Even if your pet dislikes the cold and wouldn’t set a paw into the snow for all the dog treats in the world, it’s still important to create a stimulating and fun environment for them inside the house. One way to accomplish this is to procure some toys for your pet that require them to work a little harder than usual! Toys with hidden treat inside, such as the Toppl Treat Toy can occupy your pet for a long time, and provide some entertainment for you as well! Another way to keep your pet active and engaged is to try to teach them new tricks when you’re cooped up inside together. Many dogs love the challenge of mastering new skills, and it provides an opportunity to further strengthen your relationship with your pet! Even if they’re still working on “sit,” “stay,” and “come,” this can be a valuable opportunity to cement the basics.

dog safety

Topple Treat Toy by West Paw Design

No matter how you spend your winter days, the weather is always a good excuse to cuddle up under a cozy blanket with your pup at the end of the day and show them a little love. Stay warm and have fun!

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