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Staying Healthy

Tips To Protect Your Dog In Winter

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I know it’s hot as blue blazes here in the USA right now, and you’re probably not thinking of Tips to Protect your Dog in the Winter. However, maybe now is a good time to “brush up” so you and your dog will be prepared.

Dogs, like human, use a lot more energy when outside in the coldness of winter. This can cause health problems if the dog is not properly prepared. It is up to us as their owner and keeper to make sure they are ready.

Tips To Protect Your Dog In Winter

If you have a dog that normally lives outside and and the weather is forecast to turn really cold, then you’d better let him inside if he does not have a dog house. There are many types of dogs have greater risks of winter-related sickness if not properly cared for, and here are some of them:

  • Old or sick dogs
  • Younger dogs/puppies
  • Dogs with short hair not bred for cold weather
  • Small dogs

One important point is to keep an ID on your dog in the winter and keep him on a leash when going for a walk, especially in snow or icy conditions. This is explained in the following excerpt from an ASPCA.org article:

Never let your dog off the leash on snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm, dogs can lose their scent and easily become lost. More dogs are lost during the winter than during any other season, so make sure yours always wears ID tags.

There are a variety of ways to protect your dog from the winter chill. Here are some of them:

  • Grab some winter gear. This includes doggy coats, jackets, sweaters, and boots that are sure to keep your dog from getting cold. They also insulate your dog and help to maintain his body heat and normal temperature. Use these when you want to take your dog outside, especially in snowy and windy conditions. Be sure to keep it from getting wet or being exposed to too much to snow and water, as it can transfer the chill to your dog. It may also be worn by indoor dogs if it is cold inside.
  • Give him a good winter shelter. A good dog house that is well-built for the winter should be one that has enough space for him to rest and move around but still close enough to isolate body heat and keep him warm inside. The doors should also be protected against the wind so that it doesn’t let the cold air in. Provide your dog with his basic needs there: food, a warm blanket, or even alternative beddings like straw shavings. There are also dog beds that are especially made for the winter that can be bought in the market, as they act as insulators for your dog. Also, make sure that your dog actually goes inside the doghouse, because some dogs who are not accustomed to tight spaces might not like the idea.
  • Serve plenty of food to your dog in the winter. Outdoor dogs need more since their body uses more energy to keep warm. And if possible, warm the food by microwaving or cooking it. Warm food can help to regulate your dog’s body temperature during the cold weather. Just make sure it’s not too hot for your dog to eat. When it comes to water bowls, heated ones are available if freezing is a problem.
  • Other tips include: checking your dog’s paws if they get wet or packed with snow, keeping your dog away from poisonous antifreeze, and clearing up any slippery hazards.

Have these Tips to Protect your Dog in the Winter made you feel a little cooler in this hot weather?

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