Does your pup love the winter, or would they rather stay inside and watch the snow fly from the window? Either way, pet owners and local dog groomers need to know how to best support dogs of all breeds so that they thrive in the colder winter months.
At Smoochie Pooch in Portage, we see dogs of all types and know that it’s not fair to assume that because dogs have a fur coat, they can tolerate cold weather better than humans. Domesticated dogs are used to the comfort of indoor shelter, so cold weather can be hard on them too.
Caring For Your Dog In the Winter Months
While your local dog groomers can help determine a good coat length for your pet over the winter, as a general rule, if it’s too cold for you to stand at the door without a coat on, it’s probably too cold for your dog also. If you notice that your dog is whining, shivering, or holding up their paws when outside, it’s time to bring them in.
Smoochie Pooch in Portage is sharing ten tips to ensure your dog has a happy and healthy winter.
1. Walk when the sun shines.
If possible, walk in the late morning or early afternoon when temperatures are a little warmer. Spend time playing outdoors while it’s sunny so that both you and your pet get some needed vitamin D.
2. Limit the length of outdoor time.
Ears, paws, and tails are susceptible to frostbite, regardless of what type of coat your dog may have. When the temperature drops, don’t leave your dog outdoors for long periods.
3. Invest in cozy bedding.
No one wants to sleep on a cold floor! Be sure your dog has cozy bedding and is not sleeping near drafts and cold spots to ensure they stay warm.
Dry and cold weather can be harsh for your pet’s skin. To prevent dry and flaky skin, try adding a coat supplement to their food. Ask your local dog groomers or veterinarian for recommendations. If you find that your dog’s paws, ears, or tail are dry, try applying coconut oil topically as needed.
5. Don’t overfeed them.
Colder temperatures will likely mean less active time, so they may need fewer calories. Pay attention to your dog’s activity level and adjust their food intake accordingly.
6. Get your dog groomed regularly.
Dogs need a well-groomed and clean coat to keep them properly insulated, so search ‘best dog groomers near me’ to ensure your pet sees a groomer that knows the type of cut they need.
7. Pay extra attention to their paws.
Trim the hair that grows between their pads regularly to prevent ice buildup. Salt used to melt ice can burn your dog’s pads and is toxic, so be sure to wipe their paws after a walk to remove any salt, so they don’t lick it off. Consider using dog booties if you feel your pet would be receptive.
8. Watch out for snowbanks.
Snow piled up high can offer your dog access to escape routes they might not be able to resist! If you are clearing snow, pile it away from fences to prevent dogs from climbing over.
9. Look for other winter hazards.
It’s easy for a dog to venture onto unsafe surfaces such as frozen ponds or lakes, especially if they’re covered in snow.
10. Avoid antifreeze.
Antifreeze tastes sweet, and dogs will readily lick it. However, it’s extremely toxic for them. Keep your dog away from areas where they may encounter antifreeze.
Who Are the Best Dog Groomers Near Me to Prepare My Dog for Winter?
Smoochie Pooch in Portage recommends keeping these winter care tips in mind so that you and your pooch can enjoy everything winter has to offer. To help manage winter wellbeing, don’t forget to book regular grooming appointments for your dog. The highly trained staff at Smoochie Pooch will ensure your pet is expertly groomed and ready to make it through the winter months looking and feeling great. Make an appointment with our skilled groomers by calling (219) 286 3608.