Winter is right around the corner. Is your dog ready for the cold weather? While our canine pals do have fur coats, they still need a bit of extra TLC to help keep them safe, healthy, and warm during the cold season. In this article, a Fort Collins, CO vet offers some advice on caring for your pooch in winter.
Tangles, mats, and dead fur can make Fido’s fur less effective at keeping him warm. Brush your canine pal regularly.
If your dog has thin fur, he may need some clothes to help him stay warm when the thermometer plunges. Pick up a good doggy sweater for your four-legged buddy. Be sure not to choose anything that is tight on him!
Snow, ice, sand, salt, and chemical de-icers are all harsh on Fido’s sensitive paws, and can cause painful burns and blisters. Use balm or wax to protect your pup’s furry feet. Keeping your dog’s nails and toe fur trimmed will help him get better traction on slippery surfaces.
We always recommend that dogs live indoors, where they are safer, warmer, and happier. But if Fido does spend a lot of time in the yard, make sure he has suitable shelter outdoors.
Offer your pet a nice, comfy bed to curl up in at night. If Fido is in his golden years, consider getting him a good, orthopedic doggy bed. Placement is also important: don’t put your pooch’s doggy bed in a chilly or drafty area.
Some dogs need extra calories in winter. If your dog is a senior, recovering from illness or surgery, or spends a lot of time outdoors, he may need bigger portions during the cold season. Ask your vet for recommendations.
As the weather cools, you may opt to take your dog on shorter walks, rather than a leisurely stroll. To keep your pooch from becoming a couch potato, try to keep him active inside. Playing fetch is one great way to get Fido moving.
When walking your furry pal, don’t bring him too close to frozen bodies of water where there could possibly be thin ice. You don’t want to take any chances on your pet falling through!
Do you have any questions about your dog’s health or care? We can help! Please contact us, your Fort Collins, CO vet clinic, anytime.