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How To Keep Your Dog Safe In The Snow

Posted 01.16.18 by Hannah Denton, DVM

It is no surprise that our four legged friends love snow days as much as we do. It is magical to watch a puppy run through snow for the first time but we want to give you some tips on keeping them safe during these cold, snowy days:

  1. Give your dog adequate time to adjust to conditions. Acclimating them to the cold weather is key; do this by letting them outside for shorter amounts of time more frequently throughout the day.
  2. Adapting to cold depends on the dog. Puppies and geriatric pets are less adaptable to the cold due to not being able to regulate their body temperature as well as young to middle aged dogs.
  3. Prepare your pet. Winter weather clothing and booties help protect them from the elements. However be mindful of leaving their jackets/sweaters on when they are unsupervised.
  4. Wipe their paws. Snow and ice can be damaging to their paw pads especially if they are not used to it. Wiping their paws and fur off when they come inside will help minimize frost bite and help them warm up more quickly.
  5. Keep a watchful eye for exposure to toxins. Rock salt is not toxic to dogs however ingestion can cause gastrointestinal upset. Antifreeze however can be extremely toxic to dogs. Be watchful for blue or green colored snow on driveways or sidewalks. If you think your pet has come in contact with antifreeze, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Enjoy the snow with your furry best friend- stay safe and warm!

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