For our well-being, we need to make sure that we take good care of ourselves when the cold weather hits. However, if you can feel the cold, then your dog can, too.
While some dogs are bred to be more resilient to the cold, most, and especially small dogs, can be very susceptible to the cold, snow, as well as extra chemicals and salt on the ground.
Extra Care Your Small Dog’s Paws Need in the Winter
Keep Them Groomed
One of the most important steps to ensure that your dog’s paws stay safe and healthy is to keep grooming them on a regular basis. Ice and snow are more likely to get caught on long hair, as are ice-melting chemicals. What’s more, the longer their hair, the longer they take to dry if they get a little wet. Keeping them trimmed is a good idea. Keep their nails trimmed, as well.
Wash After Every Walk
Rinse your dog’s paws with warm, but not hot water. This can help their paws recover quickly from the cold while washing off any snow, ice, salt, or deicing chemicals. Be sure to dry their paws after you do this, too.
Look Out For Cracked Paws
Just as you can get dry skin and chapped lips from the cold, the ice, snow, and salt on pavements can lead to cracked skin, which can be painful. Any de-icer that touches those cracks can cause chemical burns. Be sure to check their paws if you see them limping. For mild cases, cleaning the paws and using moisturizers while keeping them indoors can help but, if it’s severe, you need to take them to the vet.
Keep Them Moisturized
Even if you’re not seeing cracks, if it’s especially cold or snowy where you are, it’s a good idea to use paw balm to coat their paws. This can offer a protective barrier that can prevent their paws from as much excessive contact.
Consider Winter Booties
Not every dog is going to be happy with wearing booties, but if you can get yours to keep them on, then they can offer ideal protection against the cold, snow, salt, and any chemicals. Just be sure to wash them after every outing and to check their fit regularly, roughly every 15 minutes, while walking with them.
Be Mindful of What Ice Melter You Use
Your walk will likely start with you leaving your home, so take a closer look at what de-icer or ice melter you are using on your own driveways and walkways. Sand, gravel, and non-clumping cat litter offer decent de-icing properties, but without posing a threat to your dog.
Keep Your Dog Healthy With Proper Grooming All Winter Long
If you want to make sure that your small dog is properly groomed all winter long, then you might want to get in touch with Silky Paws Mobile Grooming. We’ll be glad to help you stay on top of their grooming needs to help them get through the cold months.