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Keeping Your Dog Warm in the Winter

Dogs can feel the harsh cold of winter’s wrath just as much as their owners, especially breeds of dog are that aren’t naturally accustomed to a cold winter climate. Dogs, like the greyhound, dachshund, Doberman, whippet, terrier, and the Chihuahua, have a difficult time getting acclimated to the harsh weather because they lack the thick winter coat that other dogs use for insulation. If it is up to you, to make sure they are safe, warm and protected from the cold, wind and snow. In order to keep your dog in great heath throughout the winter, you’ll want to take the following necessary precautions:


Your dog’s coat is the source of its warmth during the winter, so avoid clipping their fur too short. It’s still important to maintain a good grooming regiment to alleviate matted hair and dander problems, but a good cleanup trim will suffice. Always bathe your dog indoors and dry them off completely before allowing them to go outside. To help prevent snow build up and ice balls on the fur of their feet, trim the hair around their legs and the pads of their feet. After a walk, clean the salt off their paws and check for cracks or abrasions. Rock salt can be very painful on a dog’s foot pads.

Doggie clothing can help smaller dogs and dogs without long coats stay warm and cozy throughout the winter months. Appropriate rain gear is more suitable for wetter climates, but you need to make sure the material is breathable. Booties help keep their feet warm and protect their paws from salt and other ice melting chemicals. Dogs usually aren’t huge fans of wearing these boots, but with some training and practice, they’ll become more accepting of them.
Give your dog a nice warm place to rest during the winter. This spot should be located away from cold drafts and on a cushioned surface. Heated dog beds are perfect. This is especially important for senior dogs with arthritis. Make sure to clean their bedding on a regular basis to avoid germs and fleas.

During the winter months, the optimal choice is for your dog to remain inside and venture outside only to go potty or for a short walk. If you have a young puppy, keep an eye on them because they don’t have the ability to keep themselves warm like older dogs do. Alaskan malamutes, Siberian huskies and chow chows enjoy the cold, but their outdoor time should also be monitored, especially on exceptionally cold days.
When the weather is severely cold or snowy outside, shorten your daily walks. Your dog can still get enough exercise and find time to relieve themselves without becoming too cold. Since you may be limited to spending time outside during the winter months, try to find indoor games that you and your dog can play. Hiding toys, playing fetch and running around can burn energy and relieve boredom.


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