chihuahua on leash

Winter can be harsh for everyone with the cold, dry air, frigid temps, and storms. It is equally hard on your pet and their sensitive paws. Paw pads require extra attention during the winter with specific needs to protect them. 

The team at Oakhurst Veterinary Hospital want to give those tooties all of the care they need to stay protected during the winter, and throughout the year.

5 Tips for Protecting Your Pet’s Paws

Most pet owners don’t consider the health of their pet’s paws until something is wrong. But your pet’s feet are incredibly important to how they navigate the world, and paws can become injured without proper precautions. Here are some things to consider during the cold months…

  1. Protect your pet’s feet with booties – Booties are the perfect way to keep your pet’s feet safe and warm. There are a number of designs that you can choose from, such as the Grip Trex from Ruffwear or the Urban Walkers from Urban. Booties are great for traversing snow and ice, as well as hot pavement and rocky pathways. Plus, they are stylish!

  2. Wipe off their feet and paws after you are outdoors – Any time you are outdoors with your dog, make sure to inspect the paws and feet upon return. Dangerous deicers and rock salts can cause harm to the skin, and they are toxic if ingested. Since your dog naturally licks their feet, prevent this by quickly cleaning them off with a damp towel. This will ensure no poisonous substance is ingested.

  3. Limit time outdoors during inclement weather – Cold weather can not only put your pet at risk of hypothermia but it can also put them at risk of frostbite. Dog paws are not as durable as a pet owner might think and are sensitive to chemicals and cold weather. Have fun outside with your fur friend, but in limited times where they can run and play for a few moments, then are back inside or somewhere warm.

  4. Create a paw friendly backyard – If the rest of the world outside is full of snow, ice, rock salts and other dangers, why not make a winter haven in the backyard? Enclose an area of the backyard and keep it free from ice and snow. Avoid using any chemicals or salts, or anything that isn’t pet-friendly. Add some entertainment, such as an outdoor agility course, plus an assortment of interactive toys for enrichment.

  5. Pamper the paws – Grooming is an essential part of health and wellness. Take time to pamper your pet by attending to their grooming needs. Make sure nails are at the right length and use an electric clipper to remove excess fur around the paw pads and claws. Use a protective paw balm to prevent dryness and splitting, such as Snout and Paw Soother.

For Great Paw Care

Your friends at Oakhurst are here to answer any questions about good paw care. Your pet’s feet are responsible for all of those runs across the park, sprints through the neighborhood, and hikes to your favorite natural area. Keep them feeling great with these tips for your pet’s paws.

Call us anytime for questions or to schedule an appointment.