Walking your dog outdoors during the winter months can be a challenging task.
Not only do you and your fur baby have to brave the freezing cold, but you also have to shuffle through the snow, tread carefully on the slippery floor while braving the cold icy wind.
But still it’s important to take your dog outdoors for it to enjoy some much-needed exercise or the occasional potty break, so here are our top 6 tips for walking your dog outdoors during the winter months.
1. Keep Your Winter Walks Short
It is crucial for your dog’s emotional well-being to give them just enough time outside from being trapped in the house all day.
But on very cold winter days, try limit walking your dog outdoors to 10 to 15 minutes maximum.
Keeping your dog walks longer than a short stint outside could actually do more harm than good to your dog.
When you’re both outside, pay close attention to your dog’s body language to tell when they’ve had enough.
Some signs to look out for are if your dog starts picking up their paws as they walk or they begin to shiver or whine.
If they are doing any of these things, it’s too cold for your dog.
We recommend you take your dog home immediately.
2. Wear A Dog Sweater Or A Dog Vest
Cold weather can be as tough on our dogs as it is for us.
If you have a small dog with short fur (such as a Chihuahua, French Bulldog or Boston Terrier), you should consider getting a dog coat or sweater for your fur baby to wear when you’re walking the dog outdoors.
Just like you, most dogs hate the cold, and it’s vital to keep them warm during the winter walks.
A good tip is to try your best to keep your dog’s clothing dry by avoiding puddles or allowing them to run excessively through the snow.
We recommend Gooby’s Every Day Fleece.
It is made out of high-quality fabric to keep your dog warm. The hood is perfect to keep your fur babies’ neck warm, with a wide cut opening for their legs that allow them to play, run, jump or lay down.
3. Keep A Tight Leash
When walking your dog in the winter months, it’s imperative to keep a tight leash.
Ice cover areas, such as frozen lakes and ponds are dangerous to walk on.
There’s no easy way to tell how solid the ice may be and you don’t want to risk you or your dog falling in (especially if they catch hypothermia).
So, always keep your fur baby on a tight leash when walking your dog outdoors.
4. Use A Dog Harness
When walking your dog in during winter, choose a dog harness versus a dog collar.
When you use a dog harness instead of a collar, you have greater control over where your dog walks when compared to a collar.
Also, a harness is much more comfortable than a dog collar as when your dog pulls away from you the force is spread across their body rather than directly on their neck.
It’ll make walking your dog outdoors easier on both of you. Order a No-Pull Reflective Harness here.
5. Don’t Let Your Dog Eat Snow
It may seem harmless, but snow isn’t very good for your dog to eat.
Letting your dog eat snow does have its risk.
For example, you don’t know what bacteria, chemicals or other contaminant are in the snow.
Large consumption of snow can cause your dog to have intestinal upset, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea.
A good idea to prevent this is to let your dog drink plenty of water before you go for your winter walks and to bring a bottle of fresh water for drinking.
Water is much better to hydrate your dog than snow.
However, remember not to worry too much if your dog does eat some snow as a tiny amount is unlikely to harm them.
6. Wipe Their Feet Once You Get Home
Dogs can get bacteria, ice or rock salt caught in their feet, which can harm their paws.
To minimize the damage to their feet, make sure you wipe them with a warm cloth when you get home from your outdoor walk.
This will also prevent your dog from licking their paws and getting sick.
We hope you’ve found our tips for walking your dog during the winter months helpful.
Please always be careful whenever you’re walking your pup outdoors.
If it looks too dangerous for you and your dog to go for a walk outdoors, then stay at home.
Article provided by https://porkypaws.com.