What a beautiful day! Mom said it was over 50 degrees outside. Humans that live in Southern California or Florida wear heavy jackets and gloves when it’s 50 degrees but in New England, 50 degrees means shorts and tee shirts. For dogs, 50 degrees means lots of time at Dog Park!
The weather people say it is going to be nice for a few more days, but it is still winter so it will get cold again. It was only a couple of days ago that it was soooo cold that I just ran outside to pee and came right back in to snuggle in my blanket.
Even though I get to stay in the house, I need to be careful during the Winter because Winter weather can be dangerous for pets. Here are six things we need to do to be safe during the Winter months.
1. Stay warm. Just because I have a nice warm coat, I can still get cold when the wind blows hard or it is snowing. Lots of dogs, especially ones with short hair, need to wear sweaters or coats. If it is too cold, a pet can get something called Frostbite.
Even having a warm coat doesn’t keep snow and ice from getting between our toes and making walking difficult and can even cut our paws. That’s why Mom always checks my feet if we are on a long walk. Some dogs wear boots to keep their feet free of snow and ice.
2. Stay away from bad chemicals. Snow and ice aren’t the only dangers to our paws. Some of the chemicals people use to clear ice and snow off of their sidewalks and driveways are dangerous to pets. At our house, we use special stuff that is not harmful to pets cuz it has no salt or chlorine. There is also something called “antifreeze” that can make pets very sick or even make them die. Antifreeze is stuff humans put in their cars and sometimes, it spills out where pets can walk through it or ever drink it. Make sure you don’t let these chemicals get on your feet or in your tummy.
3. Managing outside living. Some dogs have to stay outside for long periods of time. Those dogs should have their own special house to help them stay warm. It should be big enough so they can sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough so their body heat keeps it warm. The door should face away from the wind and the floor , covered with straw or blankets needs to be changed often so it is dry and nice to cuddle in.
4. Eat well and drink plenty of water. Having a few extra calories is good as long as you are getting those calories, in protein like in meat, not calories in sugar like in treats. Drinking plenty of water is also important cuz dehydration can happen in Winter too. Water freezes when it is cold so your humans need to make sure you have unfrozen water all the time.
5. Stay away from fire. During the Winter lots of houses have fireplaces, wood stoves and space heaters to help everyone stay warm. Napping in front of the fireplace, stove or space heater is nice but it can be dangerous too. So you need to be extra careful not to get too close and be extra careful not to knock over a space heater when playing.
6. Beat the Winter itchies. The heat that makes our house nice and warm also dries out my skin and causes the itchies. Extra brushing and a nice shampoo helps and Mom also salmon oil in my food which is a delicious way to help my skin not be dry.
It’s still really nice outside so I think I’ll get Mom to take me out to play again. Enjoy your Winter, no matter where you live, but be safe too.
P.S. Blatant self promotion…. our Spot’s SPA Gift Basket has a nice brush and shampoo that can help with the itchies!!!!