When the temperature gets colder, it becomes important to make adjustments to your pet’s routine. This is essential so that your pet is happy and comfortable. Caring for your pet is a multi-level effort. It requires preparation. Your dog may love to have fun outside or cuddle with you in winters. But your pets definitely need some extra care in winters.
Keep your dog’s paws in care
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A dog’s paws are more prone to winters. For caring for the tail and ears, you can keep your walks short. You can walk during daylight hours. You can buy dog boots for your dog. It will provide warmth to your dog’s paws. Dog booties provide a shield from chemicals like deicer. Your dog can get ill if he licks his paws after walking on deicer. Dogs can refuse to wear booties. So, you can wipe their paws with a towel after the walk. Paw care is something that is required.
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Frostbite starts when the dog’s skin turns cold. The body then pulls blood to keep warm. The dog’s paws can get so cold that there can be ice crystals formed in the tissue. These can damage it. The bad thing about frostbite is that it is not visible easily. So, you can watch for signs of pale skin. The skin can turn hard and cold. When frostbitten areas get warm, they can be painful. Severe frostbites end up in black skin.
Make adjustments in daily calories
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A dog’s diet should have all the vitamins, minerals, and calories that it needs to grow well. But your dog’s activity level can change in winters. So, you need to make adjustments in your daily calories. Some dogs love snow. So, they need more calories. This is because of an increase in exercise. But some dogs don’t like to go out more often or even not at all. So, they need lesser calories. It is always better to consult a vet if you are not able to make out how to feed your dog in winters according to his activity levels.
Experiment with your pet’s food
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There are ways in which you can experiment with your pet food. You can come up with creative dishes. These will satiate him and provide him with a workout too. There are dogs that like food a lot. You can encourage them by spreading food items in different parts of the house. You can throw kibble and let the dog chase it. This will stimulate your dog mentally. It will give them movement.
You can also give them more protein. Protein will burn more energy and keep them warm. But do not overfeed your dog.
Dispense off heat sources
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Dogs and cats can search for heat sources. This is because they would want someplace to take a quick nap. These areas can be burn risks for pets. Cats can try to sit near a radiator. They can jump on a wood-burning stove. Pet owners should make these places unreachable during winters. Fireplaces are also a source of threat for the pet.
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Do not let your dog off-leash. It can be risky for your dog when the temperature becomes colder. If water isn’t fully frozen, it can cause falls. Dogs are at risk of getting hit by snow plows.
Some dogs have thick fur that keeps them warm in winters. But for dogs who don’t have thick fur, it can be tough. You should change your dog’s walk timings to late morning or early afternoon hours. This is because at these times it is sunnier. Sunshine is beneficial to pets. It gives vitamin D. You can play with your dog some games like fetch. The toys should not cause choking and other injuries. You can play with Frisbee.
Intervals of bathing
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Baths can cause dryness in pets’ skin. Dry skin can be discomforting for the pet. It is not possible to completely refrain from bathing pets. Some pets also have allergies and require bathing. You can change the frequency of bathing for pets. You can get dog shampoo for bathing your pet and speak to a vet regarding this.
You can apply coconut oil to your pet’s skin. Coconut oil is good for dry skin in pets. Give them a lukewarm water bath. The water should not be too warm or too cold.
You should make him wear a coat.
When blizzards hit
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In many parts of some countries, there are occasional blizzards. So, you should have a blizzard checklist. This will ensure that you have everything that your pets need if a blizzard hits. This list includes- dog blankets, battery-operated flashlights, clean water, dog food, dog medications, and some toys. Keep all these things in one place.
Cozy bed for pet
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Don’t let your dog sleep on the floor in winters. This is because the floor is cold. There should be a warm blanket for him. It will give him a snug. The bed should be placed in a warm place.
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This is a concern that dogs show in winters. This can occur if the dog is spending too much time in the cold or gets wet. Dogs with poor health or circulation can also get this if they are exposed to cold. Initially in hypothermia, the dog shivers, and his ears and feet can grow cold. After it progresses, there are signs of depression and weakness. Severe cases can show stiffened muscles, slowing down of heart and breathing. The dog becomes inactive. Severe hypothermia can threaten life. To prevent this, you should keep your dog indoors.
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Dogs get dehydrated in winters just like they get in summers. Many dogs eat snow. But that’s not equivalent to water. Make sure you are giving water to your dog. Break the ice that forms on top of the bowl.
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Keep your dog clean. Give him a nice coat to wear. Dry your dog after bathing. Keep him well-groomed.