Winter can be harsh on you, and it can be just as harsh or worse for your dog. Your dog is outside in the elements without anything to protect their paws. If you put booties on your dog, they can help, but you still need to keep an eye on your dog's paws every day and watch for issues that can be causing pain for your dog. If your dog's paws are out in the elements, you need to be sure you are paying attention to them and treating them as needed in order to keep them healthy. Read on for tips to help you care for your dog's paws this winter.
1. Use Salt Wisely
Salt around your home can be harmful to your dog. If you need to use salt on driveways or sidewalks, be sure to use something that is pet safe and not toxic for your pet. Most winter salt is toxic, so when your pet goes outside and then licks his paws, they could be ingesting toxins. Use sand whenever possible, or find salt that is pet safe. Try to avoid using salt in areas where your dog frequents.
2. Trim Your Dog's Paw Fur
That fur that grows between your dog's paw pads is going to accumulate with snow and ice whenever they go outside in the elements, which can cause their paws to freeze quickly when they go outside. Trimming this fur will help them. Use scissors to trim the fur, or you can use an electric razor to gently remove this fur from between their pads. Check the fur on your dog's feet often to keep it trimmed.
3. Inspect Their Paw Pads
Inspect your dog's paw pads often to ensure they are not cracking or injured in any way. If your dog has cracked or dry paw pads, you should use a product such as a balm to help soften your dog's paw pads and to add moisture to prevent cracking. If your dog has cracked pads, or they are injured, they may have a difficult time walking through the snow or walking, in general, this winter.
Winter can be hard on your dog, especially their paw pads. If your dog has any issues with his paw pads, or they are injured in any way, get him to the veterinarian for the treatment necessary to help them heal properly. Talk to a local veterinarian specialist about other things you can do to help keep your dog's paw pads healthy this winter.