In a few weeks (or days), we will finally get to see the first flakes of snow showering down on us. Winter is coming and so are the holidays, well deserved winter breaks and leisure time with family and friends. However, all the fun and festivities come with hidden dangers that may cause life-threatening situations especially to dogs. With that said, let’s delve to the focal point of this entry; keeping dogs safe during this time of the year does not actually take much and these acts are trivial. But if these are not observed, a lot of consequences may happen.
One of the primary reasons why some dogs are admitted to animal clinics in this time of the year is because of antifreeze consumption. This chemical is applied on the roads, sidewalks and on cars, specifically doing what its namesake suggests. It has a distinct, sweet smell and taste to dogs which in turn may attract them. Consuming it will lead to poisoning and even death. In order to avoid this, always keep them under supervision when outdoors, replace the water in their bowls every now and then and lastly, keep the container of antifreeze in a secure location.
- Pre-Winter checkup
Even before the fall of the first snowflake, you certainly need to take Ruffles to the nearest veterinarian in order to determine if he (let’s say Ruffles is male) has existing medical conditions that can make him extra vulnerable to the cold. This is actually important, especially if you suspect that your dog has canine arthritis – the freezing temperatures makes this condition even worse.
- After an outdoor walk or play session, be sure to brush off all the snow
Playing in the snow may be fun, but it can actually be dangerous as well. It may hide sharp objects or other debris from view, which is why employing the use of dog boots (or shoes for dogs) is essential, although corny. With that said, also remember to brush off all the snow and blow dry the fur if it gets wet – the water in the fur may freeze, which may cause body temperature to drop. Also check the footpads if there is any icy residue on them. Lastly, remember the time on how long certain dog breeds can last outdoors is different. For example, St Bernards and huskies can last longer than Dobermans and Pugs.
- Never overfeed
Although an extra layer of fat during winter is welcome, obesity must be avoided at all costs. Cold temperatures encourage lazy behavior, so it is inevitable that its calorie-burning activities will be lessened dramatically. With that said, remember to only feed it with the right or even lesser amounts, given that lazy behavior cuts the need for calories.
Though ironic, occurrences of burns during the winter are pretty common. This is so because winter encourages the use of heaters and fireplaces. Dogs have a tendency to curl up near these utilities which increases the likeliness of this type of injury. In order to avoid this, install a small fence around the fireplace or place the heater high on the wall.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jenny Dwight is a writer, blogger and also a pet lover. She loves writing and sharing her thoughts about pet and animal care. Facebook and twitter are her hang out zone and she likes tweeting pet care related updates. She is known to her friends as a caring and loving pet owner and it is always part of her daily routine to go jogging every morning with her pet dog named Asha. She also brings Asha to an animal clinic once a month for her medical and dental needs. Jenny finds her pet as a fun-loving and smart dog.
Keeping Dogs Safe During Winter
Have you taken precautions already? Want to share any ideas you may have that have not been mentioned lets hear them by submitting your comment.