- Bundle up! If your dog is a northern breed, such as a Spitz like an Akita or Siberian Husky, they are already in their element. But if not, chances are your dog could benefit from a doggie jacket. While they do have fur coats of their own, breeds with short, fine fur are less snow-resistant. Check to make sure their jackets are flexible and breathable, and moderate their time spent in the cold accordingly!
- Shovel snow around your front door or porch, and use pet safe ice melt. DO NOT use salt, it is harmful for paw pads and can cause severe burns. Dog boots and socks also help protect paws from a harsh environment, though we suggest allowing time for your dog to familiarize with them before they set out on their snowy adventure.
- Are your dog's nails trimmed? Long nails can cause a pup to slip and slide. Regular trimming promotes overall health and better traction on icy surfaces.
- While dogs love to taste all that is new and exciting, do not let them eat snow. Walking in public areas means some variables will be out of your control, such as salt on the ground, antifreeze, or waste. Keep a watchful eye on your dog to prevent them eating something they should not.
- A playful romp in the snow is great exercise, but it can be easy to forget about staying hydrated. If a dog is sporting winter gear, active recreation can cause them to heat up easily. Allow your dog to have a good drink of water before and after play.
As New Englanders we know snow, and we also know there are proper ways to make our winter experience at least a little more pleasant. For us pet parents, this might mean dedication spent waiting in the cold until Fido does their business, but it also means time spent frolicking in a winter wonderland.
And we can't deny that our pets provide excellent snowy entertainment!