Winter months are the coldest months of the year in polar and temperate climates.
But just because it’s cold during the winter months it doesn’t mean we have to refrain from taking our dogs out for a walk.
However, when it comes to this, don’t assume that dogs’ fur makes them control the cold better than human beings. Dogs also feel cold. Because of this reason, taking your dog out for a walk during the winter months can be a very difficult and challenging task.
Here are some simple tips that will help you take your dog out for a walk in winter:
1. During winter months, keep your dog outside for a very short time (10 to 15 minutes is okay)
Because these months are very cold, you need to keep your winter walk short. It is important to maintain your dog’s emotional well being by giving him enough time to play outside instead of keeping him indoors. However, don’t spend a lot of time in the cold because you will be hurting your dog’s health. Make sure to pay attention to your dog’s body language. That will give you a hint if he’s had enough of the cold and wants to go back home. For instance, when you’re having fun with your dog in the cold and all of sudden you discover that he is shivering, don’t waste time or ignore that. rather. Take him home as fast as you can.
2. Make sure your dog wears a sweater, vest, and even dog pants.
A dog sweater is an excellent choice when you’re both going out for a walk in the cold. Just like human beings, dogs also feel cold. If you’re dog is one them, keep him warm when you’re going in the cold by dressing him in warm dog clothes.
3. There’s no easy way to tell how solid the ice may be and you don’t want to risk you or your dog falling in. The best way to keep this from happening is to keep a very close watch on your steps.
When walking your dog during winter, select a dog harness versus a dog collar because harnesses have greater control over where your dog walks when compared to a collar.
Also, a harness is much more comfortable than a dog collar, as when your dog pulls away from you the force is spread across their body rather than directly on their neck.
Snow seems so harmless but it can be dangerous. So when you’re out with your dog, keep a close watch on him to make sure he doesn’t eat snow. There could be bacteria or chemicals in the snow that could be harmful to your dog. Large consumption of snow can upset your dog’s intestines. This can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Before you go out on your walk, just let your dog have some water for hydration instead of getting hydrating by snow. It’s no secret that dogs tend to eat whatever they find and as tempting as snow looks and as harmless as it seems, this can be a bad idea. So it’s better keep a close watch than to expose them to the risks of eating snow.
4. Don’t let your dog eat antifreeze
Although, you might not see much antifreeze, don’t take the risk during the winter months, especially when you go on a walk and pass areas that may have this dangerous chemical.
Because dogs are likely to get bacteria, ice or rock salt caught in their feet, which can harm their paws, you need to clean and wipe your dog’s feet carefully. To at least to minimize the damage to their feet, make sure you wipe them with a warm cloth when you get home from your outdoor walk.
This will also prevent your dog from licking their paws and getting sick.
In order to totally avoid this from happening, it’s smart to protect your dog’s paws with doggy mits.
5. Clean any salt and chemicals off your dog.
Finally, if your dogs play or walk outside during wet and snowy winter conditions, be sure to give them a thorough rub-down with a clean towel before they come inside.
These are tips to help you figure out a safe way to take your dog outdoors during winter months. However, if you’re not comfortable with taking your dog out during cold seasons, then just stay at home. Don’t insist on taking him out if you’re not sure because you might end up harming your dog.
About the Author:
John Alex is a resident pet care expert. He also curates a select range of vet recommended and approved products. He enjoys writing educational articles to help those who want to look after their pets all over the place. Check out his latest article about emotional support dogs.