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5 Pawtastic Winter Tips

As the song goes... the weather outside is frightful... I do say winter is starting to show. With that lets look at some quick tips to keep your dog happy and safe this winter.

1) Boots on dogs

When most people think of dog booties they think of the funny videos of dogs walking around weird and silly. But the truth is booties are a great easy way to protect the pads of your dog. Booties protect from salt and snow buildup, additionally, booties can provide extra traction when it comes to ice. It will take a few times to get used to booties but once your dog is used to them there shouldn't be any problems. When buying booties you want to measure the length and width of your pup's paw. This way you get the perfect fit for you dog.

2) Use paw balm on their pads

The same reason we use lotion to protect ourselves from drying out we want to use a protectant on our dogs pads. It adds a semi-permeable layer of insulation that protects from chemicals and extreme temperatures. Balms are great at healing irritated and or cracked pads. You can make your own paw protectant or buy some at your local pet store. Just to note a little goes a long way, think of it like putting on chapstick just a thin layer.

3) Clean off their paws

It sounds like a no brainer but needs to be listed. So many times I have walked into my own home and just let my dog run in and do his own thing but it is really important to makes sure you clean off the snow, salt or other chemicals used outside. I personally use a towel and run it under warm water and clean each paw. Make sure you get between the toes. Another way is to dip a paw in luke-warm water then dry off each paw. Just make sure not to use soap. Soap will dry out the pads and cause cracking if you are taking your dog out 3-4 times a day. Of course you can always put the paw balm on their pads afterwards!

4) Trim hair between the toes

Trimming the hair between the toes especially if it is long will help snow, ice and salt to not build up in between the toes. Additionally, hair that bunches between the pads is uncomfortable and hair that folds under the pads can cause the dog to slip on ice or slick areas.

5) Trim nails

This is important because long nails changes how the dog walks. This can create additional pressure on your dog's pads. Long nails also make it difficult for them to keep their balance on snow and ice.

It can be difficult to work a nine to five shift and set exercise time aside for your dog every day, which is why Off Collar Pet Care aims to assist pet owners. Located in Alexandria, VA, Off Collar Pet care is committed to ensuring owners and their pets have all the assistance they need. From dog walking to dog boarding, house sitting, and more, you’ll find comprehensive pet services to explore on our website. Call (703) 721-8913 if you have any questions. Follow us on Facebook, instagram and twitter for updates.

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