Baby It’s Cold Outside! Cold Weather Dog Walking Tips
It is cold in Boise, Idaho right now. It was -6 the other night and it looks like we are in for a very cold winter. We have a list of tips to help keep your dogs happy and healthy this winter. Exercise is still important even during the winter.
1.) If it is to cold for you it most likely is to cold for them– if you bundle up with a good winter coat, gloves and boots and after 15 minutes your freezing chances are your dogs might be also. Different breeds of dogs have different thresholds for cold. If you have a great Pyrenees mountain dog their fur is better suited for the snow compared to a flat faced dog (Pug, Bull Dog ie). You might have to adjust the length and time of day for your walks during the Winter.
2.) Monitor Ears & Paws- you want to keep an eye on the temperature of their ears and paws to make sure they are not to cold
3.) Water, Water, Water- it is so important to have access to unfroze drinking water for your dogs at all times. In Winter months dehydration can be a big problem in pets.
4.) In Door Time- exercise is very important so take them for walks indoors at places that allow pets like Home Depot, Zamzows and Petsmart. You can also play ball in the house granted you have the space.
5.) Wipe Paws- many people use salt or chemical mixtures to melt snow and ice on the sidewalks. Make sure to wipe down dog paws so the chemicals don’t irritate their feet.
6.) Watch Out of ICE- Ice can be dangerous if you slip and fall so make sure you watch were you are walking. It is important to have control of Fido when walking in winter weather. Try to adjust your walking times for best visibility.
7.) Reflective Leash/Light– Winter Months bring shorter days. You most likely will be walking at dusk or in the dark. Reflective leashes are wonderful as well as lights. You want to make sure cars on the road see you and fluffy. We sometimes us a headlight when walking or hiking in the evenings.
8.) Have Towels/Rags Ready- after a nice walk it is important to wipe paws but also to remove snow clumps that might form. It is important to check between toes also for snow build up as well as under their bellies.
Please don’t leave your pets outside without access to an insulated heated space. Dog houses and outdoor shelters alone aren’t enough this time of year.