Just like you, your dog may also feel uncomfortable when the cold weather kicks in. All dogs have varying tolerances for it, but small dogs, skinny dogs and older dogs in particular might struggle.
There are a few tips you can follow to keep that canine friend warm, safe and happy this winter.
Be careful with outdoor time in winter
If the weather falls into minus temperatures, it may be worth keeping your dog indoors until things heat up a bit (unless you own a breed such as a husky or St Bernard!). All dogs need exercise, so try to ensure they at least spend some quality time engaging in indoor play.
In winter, try to walk your dog at the warmest, sunniest part of the day, rather than early morning or late evening.
If your furry friend is more vulnerable to the cold, a dog sweater, boots or socks could help a lot.
Protect and inspect paws
Pay special attention to the state of their paws at this time. The salt and grit used to melt ice is painful and potentially dangerous when it gets trapped. So is compacted snow. Soak their paws in gentle warm water afterwards to get it out.
Consider using a paw balm as a preventative measure. If you notice your dog’s paws becoming cracked, seek out a dog-friendly moisturiser.
Keep them well-fed and hydrated
Your dog may instinctively want to consume more calories in winter because they are burning more by trying to stay warm. Energy-dense dog foods high in dietary fat can help with this. Make sure your pooch continues to get the right quantity of nutritional food. Dogs with delicate stomachs can benefit from sensitive dog food.
Due to lower humidity levels in winter, you may notice your dog is drinking even more. Keep checking the water bowl and ensure it’s always topped up.
A cosy, warm bed
Short-haired dogs, older dogs and puppies in particular need warmth. Ensure your dog’s bed suits their unique set of needs in the first place. Place it away from drafts in the house and cold tile flooring during winter.
Find dog bedding with a nice, warm material like faux fur. Giving them an additional dog blanket to snuggle up to is also great.
Stay away from frozen lakes and rivers
When out on a frosty, winter walk with your dog, take care not to let them walk on any frozen lakes or rivers. Keep them on the lead, if there is any risk of this happening. Otherwise, it could end badly.
Stay one step ahead by knowing what the risk factors for dogs are in winter. This means you can adapt to their needs, always keeping them happy and healthy.
Mike is the proud owner of a 7-year-old Cockapoo named Luna. He loves to share stories, tips and information about owning a Cockapoo. With over7 years of experience as an owner, Mike is passionate about helping others own and care for their dog.