When It Snows and They Have to Go Outside

By Maria Posted in dog care, Porch Potty /

Snow is soft and fun to play in. Some dogs like it and others really don’t favor getting that cold. But, what happens when your dog needs to take care of business and the snow is piling up outside? There are a few things to consider when it comes to a snowy environment and your dog’s paws. First of all, snow is basically a crystal, which is abrasive to your dog’s paws. Combined with the cold it will make their paws susceptible to injury and irritation. The snow can definitely be an environmental danger every dog owner should be aware of and be prepared for.

Dog care when out in the snowTaking care of them 

After a short time in the snow, you may notice your dog’s paws getting a little red, just like our hands after a few snowball fights. Warming them up safely under warm (not hot) running water will help improve circulation and prevent any discomfort from debris accumulated outside. Keep in mind that rock salt is used on roads and walkways to prevent snow and ice accumulation, and it can easily irritate your dog’s paws or get ingested when they lick them.

Applying topical solutions to help reduce and prevent irritation may be necessary for dogs that spend an abundant amount of time in snowy conditions. These solutions can be found at many pet stores, but a little bit of petroleum jelly will work as well. Just be sure to wash their paws when they come back inside. Another option to consider is purchasing dog snow boots, especially if your canine is going to be outdoors for extended periods of time. Such will help keep their paws warm and safe.

Signs of irritation are easy to spot, such as redness and limping. If their paws are irritated, it’s best that they stay out of the snow until they are back to normal again. And while irritation can be annoying, cuts and lacerations (due to unseen objects under the snow or even paws splitting from severe irritation), can be dangerous. Be sure that you always examine your dog’s paws after they spend time in the snow.

As your dog’s owner and protector, it is necessary for you to take precautions and make sure that their potty area access is safe. Icy steps, fallen branches, and miscellaneous debris can all be easily hidden from view in a snowy yard. Take the time to clear snow away from their potty area and pick up anything that they could trip, slip, or otherwise injure themselves on. As for icy stairways, salt or sand will help keep them from being slippery. Just be sure to wash your dog’s feet afterwards.

Finding a different potty solution when it snows and your dog doesn’t want to go may be required. Indoor dog litter boxes come in different styles and features, some offering grassy texture and others relying on litter or pads to provide absorption. If you’re worried about your dog traversing the snowy tundra in the back yard, this could be your most viable solution.

Be prepared

The falling snow can be fun for some, but dangerous for others. Be sure that your pup has a safe experience when it comes to playtime and potty time in the snow. As long as you’re prepared for the situation, your dog is bound to enjoy catching a few snowflakes or fetching a snowball or two.

Keeping up with your pet supplies can be just another thing you don’t want to have to remember. After a long day at work and going to the store, the last thing you want to do is have to go “to the store” again. Consider home delivery of your pet supplies!

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