Imagine walking barefoot on blistering hot cement in the peak of summer, ouch. Now imagine walking barefoot in the dead of winter when the temperature has plummeted and ice covers the sidewalk. Just as walking outside barefoot would not only be uncomfortable but damaging to your feet during these times of year, the same goes for your pup. A good rule of thumb is if you need extra protection or care for the bottom of your feet so do they.
How to prepare your pup for being outside in the winter:
- Keep their feet groomed – If your pup’s nails are clinking on the floor, they are too long. Try to keep their nails short enough that they don’t touch the ground when they are walking around. Another thing to check is the hair between their pads. Preferably, the hair would be no longer than their paw pads to prevent that hair from getting dirty and matted which can be painful.
- Check paws before outside play or walks – Check your pup’s paws to ensure they don’t need to be groomed (discussed above), as well as, for any small rocks or other outside debris that could be stuck between the pads of their feet.
- Note for indoor dogs – If your pup spends most of their time indoors, the pads on their paws will be softer. To help their paws become used to the rough outdoors, gradually increase their outdoor play.
- Use moisturizers – Use a paw balm or other paw moisturizer to prevent and soothe cracking and chapped paws. You may need to do this more frequently during the coldest of the winter and the hottest of the Summer.
- Wear boots – Consider getting your pup a pair of winter boots. This will protect them from not only the cold but also pieces of sharp ice and potentially harmful substances, such as ice melt.
- Limit exposure – Ultimately, the best thing you can do in the worst parts of winter is limit their outdoor time. Just like we limit outdoor time for children and ourselves during these times of the year, the same caution should be taken for your pup.
At The Barking Lot, we offer grooming services to help with your pup’s winter paw maintenance, doggie daycare, and so much more. Learn more about all of The Barking Lot services and products by calling or checking us out online today!