Did you know that by keeping your dog’s nails trimmed it can actually keep their feet dryer?
When nails are long, it forces your dog’s paw to spread out more, which in turn exposes the inside of the pad and in between each toe.
Whether it’s the potential for snow, or just rain in the forecast, it’s important to know how to properly care for your dog and their feet.
If you are planning on a long walk or numerous trips outside through Ice or Snow, it’s best to use “booties” on your dog’s feet to minimize chances of chapped, irritated and/or itchy paws. Sweaters and coats are also good to use to help your dog maintain it’s core temperature but don’t rely on it completely. Their head, ears, tail and feet are still exposed which can result in lower body temperature if they become wet and stay outside too long. Dogs can get frostbite and hypothermia just like humans, so keep your walks to a shorter time frame, especially if they are not used to being out in colder temperatures. Signs of Mild Hypothermia may include:
- Body temperature 90-99 degrees (normal body temp is 101-102.5 degrees)
- Lack of mental alertness
Consult your veterinarian right away on the proper course of treatment.
If you’ve walked through areas where ice melting chemicals or salt has been used, it is important to immediately wash your dog’s feet with warm water and mild soap after you come back inside. Make sure to wash in between the paws (and belly if you have a shorter dog) as well. These chemicals can cause skin irritation and if ingested can be harmful. Also, do not allow your dog to drink from puddles of water or melted snow that is near any area that may have had de-icer used nearby.
Antifreeze is also deadly to animals. Make sure to immediately clean up any spills. Click here to get step by step instructions on how to clean it up.
Rule of thumb (or paw) is to always dry off your dog’s feet when coming inside from a wet environment.