Cold Weather Dog Safety,
“Tips” and Helpful Associated Products
by Keith Somers / Like Keith & Dog Wonders on Facebook
Age, a cold weather dog safety “tip”, is critical. Puppies, senior dogs, and dogs with special health issues do not tolerate cold weather as well as adult dogs. Keep them as warm as possible while outside and provide them a warm cozy bed, away from drafts, while inside.
Antifreeze contains ethylene glycol which has a sweet smell and taste making it appealing but lethal . . .
. . . to dogs (pets). Keep antifreeze safely stored and immediately clean-up any spills. If your dog has ingested even a small amount of antifreeze—seek immediate veterinary help. In addition, some brake and transmission fluids are highly toxic as well. These products are rapidly absorbed and there is a high mortality rate! There is a cold weather dog safety product you can buy. It is a safe alternative to Ethylene Glycol antifreeze—it is called Propylene Glycol Antifreeze. It costs a little more than regular antifreeze. Get some anyway just for the peace of mind that comes with it.
Calories—your dog needs additional calories if it is a working dog or if it spends a lot of time outside during cold weather. Winter means that it takes more energy to keep body temperatures regulated, hence additional calories are needed and helpful. Buy some of The Best Dog Food Ever Made. Each ingredient in Life’s Abundance Dry Dog Food is carefully chosen to work with all the others to provide your dog with a wholesome, highly-nutritious and perfectly-balanced meal every day, every year—over a long and loving lifetime! It is guaranteed fresh to your door and is considered an excellent cold weather dog safety product.
Christmas Tree Trimmings, like tinsel or broken glass balls, when ingested by companion pets may cause an obstruction of the intestines requiring surgery. Symptoms may include decreased appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, listlessness and weight loss. Christmas comes at the beginning of winter, and Christmas has to do with cold weather dog safety.
Coat Care includes regular brushing, keeping the fur clean and improving the skin, coat and circulation. Clean fur lofts air and helps your dog stay warm. Going into cold weather, never shave your dog’s protection against the cold away. Revitalizing Shampoo will naturally cleanse and beautify your dog’s coat, and a between baths use of Bath Fresh Mist will keep your pet cleaner, longer. When considering cold weather dog safety needs you perhaps have not thought about these important products until now. They should be on you cold weather dog safety list.
Collars, especially metal choke collars, should never be worn by dogs that live outdoors in cold climates, or by unsupervised dogs—the steel attracts cold and can burn the skin black. This is a cold weather dog safety matter. A leather or nylon flat buckle collar with rabies and ID tags is the best choice.
Diet and Good Nutrition are very important during the winter months for cold weather dog safety. Dogs that spend a lot of time in outdoor activities require an increase in caloric intake to generate more energy and ward off the cold. Dogs that don’t get much exercise, being couch potatoes, need a decrease in their caloric intake so that they don’t become overweight. Balanced activities are important. Here is the Best Weight-Loss Dry Dog Food available—and LA’s Weight-Loss Formula that delivers the support dogs need to lose fat and maintain healthy weights.
Frostbite can be dangerous. After being outside for an extended period of time, your dog’s ears, tail, and paws are susceptible to frostbite and need to be carefully examined, a manditory cold weather dog safety “tip”. Frostbite is characterized by pale white, gray, or blue skin which may be difficult to see. If you suspect frostbite—call your veterinarian immediately!
Hypothermia is risky. When your dog is exposed to cold weather, or worse wet and cold weather, for long periods of time, body temperature can drop below 96 degrees Fahrenheit. Shivering is the danger signal for you to immediately head to the house where it is warm. Small and short-haired breeds of any size should wear sweaters when taken for walks during the winter. Some breeds are better suited than others to live outside during cold weather. However, the majority of dogs must have your help and intervention. Indoor accommodations are best during extreme temperature drops, but if that is not possible set up a suitable dog house, protected from the wind, rain and snow. Use only heating devices designed and approved for use with pets, reading and following the directions carefully before use. Keep fresh water (in a heated bowl) 24/7, and extra food for energy to maintain body heat in harsh climates. Pay attention to cold weather dog safety here.
Ice-Melting Chemicals and Salt put on sidewalks and roads can cause severe burning, cracking, or irritation for your dog’s footpads and on returning home he/she may lick the toxic material from their paws. A dog-specific foot balm will help condition the pads when used regularly. You might want to try Tuf Foot or Musher’s Secret, applied beforehand, protecting paws from chemicals, salt and ice with an all natural, 100-percent wax-based cream. On your driveway and sidewalk use a Sure Paws Ice Melter—deicer to melt icy surfaces, leaving no harmful residue, is a cold weather dog safety product. It is safe for vegetation and humans as well, melting ice quickly down to 15 degrees.
Outdoor Pets must be daily provided with adequate shelter, warm dry bedding, water, and food. Give serious consideration to keeping your dog inside in the winter. If that does not seem possible, keep in mind that all dogs, left outdoors unsupervised should have access to a warm shelter. Here is a good option: Petmate Barn III Dog House. It is available in four sizes and is maintenance free, portable, can be used indoors or outdoors, has rear air ventilation, a rain diverting rim, a raised interior floor, and cannot become flea-infested. A Heated, Soft Dog Bed would be good too—this one comes in three sizes. Check out the features with more than 300 great reviews on these cold weather dog safety products.
Outdoor Safety in snowy and icy conditions with your dog off-leash, means trouble is on the way. Dogs can lose their footing and slip and fall, resulting in breaks, fractures and dislocations. Dogs can lose their scent in heavy snow and get lost. Iced over ponds and lakes are also hazardous. Dogs love to catch and eat snow balls, but even if it is clean it can lead to diarrhea and tummy aches. Cold weather dog safety and dog ID is where common sense should prevail. Up-to-date Custom Engraved Stainless Steel Pet ID Tags are a necessity all year around, but especially in the winter with the possibility of your dog becoming disoriented and lost when separated from you during a snow storm. Think about it—finding your lost dog or locating the owner of an injured or lost dog, could mean the difference between life and death for someone’s companion animal. See “Dog ID” above for ID pros and cons.
Outerwear, like a sweater from head to tail and around the belly, will provide needed protection for all short-coated breeds, small or large, that are vulnerable to cold. Some breeds that should have sweaters or jackets for protection against the cold are Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, Miniature Pinschers, Whippets, and Greyhounds. Remember that not all dogs will tolerate clothing and not all dog will react in the same way to the cold. Know your dog well, and make an extra effort to keep him/her comfortable when outside in the cold.
Paw Care is critical when there is ice and snow on the ground. You can protect the pads and hair and skin between them by using one of the following: boots, wax, petroleum jelly, cooking oil or spray. It is also very important to clean your dog’s legs and paws after a walk, using warm water in a spray bottle, followed by a clean towel. Snow, dirt and street chemicals can form very painful ice balls between their toes, and the danger of frostbite is always there. Have you thought of foot protection Muttlucks Dog Booties?—not all dogs can get used to wearing them, but many do. When giving serious consideration to cold weather dog safety, they can prevent slipping on ice, injuries from falling, and cuts from sharp objects hidden under the snow. Before you buy booties, read this article—lots to read but well worth your time: Best Dog Boot – A Product Review
Traveling is an important cold weather dog safety “tip”—just taking your dog along for the ride. Keep a cold weather dog safety “kit” in your car that includes: blankets, towels, water, treats and a flashlight. Then include a Large or Small, AKC First Aid Kit, containing a Waterproof ID Card, Collapsible food/water Bowl, Pet Safety Guide, Thermal Foil Emergency Blanket, Tweezers, Alcohol Cleansing Pads, Sting Relief Prep Pads, Emergency Whistle, and much more… all packed in one convenient travel-sized soft case with a belt loop for pet owners on-the-go.
Water—keep it fresh and readily available. Do not depend on snow as a substitute for water. As in the summer, your dog is just as likely to be dehydrated in the winter. Also, remember that water can freeze very quickly in a bowl. If your dogs lives outside, this is a cold weather dog safety product you ought to consider. Here is a safe, 96 ounce water bowl, ice free down to 20º below zero: HEATED WATER BOWL.
Cold Weather Dog Safety “Tips” to Review and Remember
“Do not let cold winter weather stop you and your dog from enjoying the outdoors together. These cold weather dog safety “Tips” are yours to keep for periodic review. Be safe, careful and considerate—your pet companion is after all, family.