Pets are just as susceptible to the winter elements as humans. If it's too cold for you outdoors (while wearing a jacket, hat, gloves and insulated boots), it's definitely too cold for your pet.
If your pet has very fine hair or a short coat, consider dressing your pet in a sweater or jacket. This is particularly important if you are taking more than a 5-minute walk in freezing temperatures.
Cold, slushy, icy, snowy weather can wreak havoc on your pet's paws.
Paws need special attention during the winter. Salt and other ice- melting products can sting and burn your pet's feet. Ice and snow can build up between their toes and cling to the fur, so be sure to get to your grooming session regularly to keep paws in tip-top shape.
Use ice-melt that is safe for your pet. Most ice-melts contain chlorides, which are harmful to your pet, especially if ingested. Look for chloride-free ice-melt. Be sure to read the ingredients on the label, even if it states "pet safe" on the packaging, to make certain that it does not contain this irritating ingredient.
After walking in the elements, wipe your pet's paws with a damp, soft cloth. This helps prevent further irritation to your pet's paws and keeps them from ingesting the ice-melt should they lick their paws.
Petroleum jelly massaged into paws prior before venturing outside also provides a measure of protection against the elements.
If you have additional questions about keeping your pet's paws or fur healthy during the winter months, be sure to ask your groomer at your pet's next grooming session!
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