Is it too cold for my dog, does he or she need a coat?

Most dog’s natural coats are enough to keep them cozy in the
winter. Shorthaired dogs, however, are more likely to benefit from a
coat. You know your pet best! Smart decisions such as returning
home if your pet is shivering, spending less time outside on colder
days, and generally watching your pet for signs of discomfort
should help keep your dog safe from cold.

Can my dog get frostbite from the cold?

Although uncommon, it is possible for dogs to develop frostbite,
particularly on their paws! The hair between their toes collects
clumps of snow, which melt and turn into ice, building into larger
and larger ice balls. In order to avoid frostbite, keep the toes
between their hair trimmed during winter months, and promptly
dry off your dog’s paws when returning from a run.

Will salt from icy streets harm my pup?

Dog’s padded feet are built to deal with tough terrain and substances, but the salt laid out to melt ice is
particularly harsh. Although uncommon, exposure to salt can cause the pads of your dog’s feet to crack. If
this occurs, check with your veterinarian for necessary treatment. A more like scenario is the salt will irritate
your dog’s feet, much like dry skin is irritating and painful to humans. In order to prevent irritation, wipe off
your dog’s feet with a wet cloth after each run to remove those harmful chemicals. If your dog has
especially sensitive feet, you could purchase dog booties at a local pet store. These booties are not
mandatory for outdoor exercise, and many dogs find them much more irritating than the salt.

What else should I watch out for during winter exercise?

It is not uncommon for antifreeze and other dangerous chemicals to mix in with puddles of water during
the winter months. Even a small amount of antifreeze can cause severe poisoning in dogs, so it is
especially important to prevent your dog drinking from these puddles. You can keep your home pet-friendly
by using ice melting compounds that are safe for your dog, children, and the environment!

Thank you for reading!
We hope you learned more about how to keep your pup safe this winter while still getting exercise.