Winter Dog Walking

winter dog walking

We hope you are enjoying the warmer temperatures and the opportunity to spend time outdoors with your dogs.  Dog walking, this past January was burdensome to say the least.  Several of our clients reported that they resorted to carrying Fido home because he laid down and refused to move.  NOT FUN!

If all goes well, on Groundhog Day . . . wink, wink . . . we will learn that spring has sprung, and our Winter Dog Walking Woes will be behind us.  However, if we learn that we can expect six more weeks of winter, please consider the following tips and ideas before you grab Fido’s leash and brave the arctic air yet again.

When the temperatures are in the teens with wind-chills even lower it might be best to visit a pet-friendly business such as your local pet store or Home Depot for an indoor stroll.  This is a warmer, safer alternative and offers the opportunity to socialize with other dogs and people.  If you do walk outdoors be very cautious to avoid slipping and falling on any icy patches that you must cross.  When snow, ice and salt are present there is the probability that it will collect between your dog’s toes and cause discomfort and burning.

Consider sticking to grassy areas that are left untreated.  If you must walk on roads and sidewalks remember to wipe your dog’s paws with a clean, warm wet cloth after your walk.  This will prevent chapping and redness and lessen the likelihood that your dog will ingest road salt from any licking that occurs post-walk.  Boots . . . They’re not just for humans anymore!

There is a myriad of stylish, functional footwear for your dog.  Visit this link to discover some alternatives to keep your dog’s paws safe and warm.  Top 11 Dog Boots  Want to treat your dog to a post-walk foot massage? There are many products online and several DIY recipes for a soothing protective balm.  Musher’s Secret is a favorite of ours.  DIY balms make wonderful gifts for your dog-loving friends. The American Kennel Club recently offered this recipe that you can customize with your favorite essential oils:   DIY Paw Balm

If your pup has a thin, short coat (Chihuahuas, Whippets, Greyhounds, Miniature Pinschers, etc.) you may need to add an extra layer in the form of a coat or sweater to avoid the chills.  It’s always fun to keep our dogs guessing.  Perhaps multiple walks of duration followed by Indoor Brain Games:  Impulse Control, Hide n Seek and learning new tricks are all fun ways to expend energy and train at the same time.  Sign up for some extra classes!! We are ALWAYS here and happy to help.

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