Image Credits: Pixabay
Winter could be tough on your dog’s paw pads. This body part is exposed to the elements and modern day toxic pollution. The pads are at risk of chemical burns, drying, frostbite, cracking, and trauma. There are however some ways through which you can help your dog to avoid them and keep the paws healthy and happy at the time when the temperature significantly drops. Many protective balms are available in the market, and some human use products are helpful too. Do a little research and buy the product most suitable for your dog. Once you bring a balm home, you have to do some activities to keep your dog safe in winter.
The first step is to prepare the paws. The paws should be ready before the balm application. Healthy winter feet is possible only if you groom your dog well. In-case your dog has long hairs, use clippers to cut the hair between paw pads so that the length of the hair is even with the pad. Trim hair around paws to make sure that the hair does not touch the ground. This will prevent ice ball formation around and between the paw pads. Ice formation is extremely painful and can be traumatic to the dog. Apply balm to pads. Although the nails should be trimmed all through the year, it is more important to do so in winter as the long nails compel the paw to wideout. This makes it more probable that ice and snow will collect between the pads.
Apply balm as a thin layer before you take out your dog for its winter walk. Wipe the dog’s paws after you two finish the walk. Use a warm washcloth to wipe and remove ice, ice melt, and snow. Once you do this, apply another layer of balm. This will soothe the irritation, and it will also prevent the paw from drying out. If you cannot locate balm, then regular human-use vaseline will do the trick. Another excellent alternative to protect your dog’s paws is to buy dog boots. They are sold in most pet stores. The boot is sock-like and has velcro straps. The straps keep the shoes in position. A few boots come with soles which offer the extra benefit of traction. The boots help the paws to stay dry. They also prevent exposure to de-icers and salt. After you strap on the boots, make sure they are not too tight. The fit should be a snug one. It should not be loose as the boots will come off. You should acclimatise your dog to wear boots as canines do not like to wear them