By Kevin Fisher
It’s November and in most parts of the country winter is imminent. (It’s even getting a tad chilly here in Southern California!) Time to winterize your house with a little weather stripping and a few extra blankets; time to to winterize your car with anti-freeze and an ice scraper. It’s even time to start thinking about winterizing your best friend! No you don’t need to weather strip or de-ice your dog but there are a few things to bear in mind as the shorter days draw in.
It goes without saying that if you live in a cold weather area you should have a warm place for your dog to sleep . The back yard is no longer good enough unless your little guy has a somewhere to get out of the wind and the rain (but you knew that already didn’t you)
If you bathe your own dog make sure you use warmer water, preferably inside and spend a little extra time drying and brushing. Bubbles n’ Beads is the perfect cold weather product because it cleans and conditions in one go so your dog spends less time wet. If you want to skip a few bath times try DryDog Instant Clean , an all natural bath replacement spray that not only helps to clean your best friend but contains ordenone, an ingredient that traps and removes the bad smells that seem to flourish between groomings. TIP: Keep a rag and bottle at the door to use on after-walk muddy paws
Don’t leave your dog alone in the car; If the engine is left running there’s a possibility of carbon monoxide infiltrating the car, if the engine is not on it may just get too cold.
Salty frozen sidewalks can be a dogs worst enemy. Not only do his paw pads (and nose) get cold but they’re desiccated even further by the salt. It’s always a good idea to rinse and wipe his paws (and nose if he’s been sniffing around) when yo come back in from a walk. A great product to use before and after walks is bowWow Butter Balm . Apply a little before you go out and it forms a barrier between the skin and the environment and a little more after you come in will prevent irritation and heal dry skin. Note you should never use Petroleum jelly or Petroleum based products on your dogs pads; petroleum jelly contains petrolatum, which can cause gastrointestinal upset if ingested. bowWow Butter balm is all natural shea butter and is perfectly safe.
Be vigilant on walks, this is the season for antifreeze and some of which can spill on driveways, It’s a particularly lethal product because it tastes and smells good to your dog but contains ethylene glycol, which can be deadly even in small quantities.
If your dog is out in the cold and starts shaking or shivering get him inside as soon as possible. If the shaking doesn’t stop within ten minutes of being inside it’s a good idea to call your vet.
Like people, dog’s seem to be more susceptible to illness in the winter , so be alert for the warning signs; loss of appetite, drinking an inordinate amount of water or just general lethargy. Never give your dog over-the-counter medications meant for humans unless you’ve spoken to your vet first. Some products that are perfectly safe for humans are toxic to dogs; aspirin, in the wrong dosage can cause toxicity, pseudoephedrine can be very harmful or even deadly to pets, even breath fresheners can contain both menthol, (which can be irritating to the mouth and the stomach) and xylitol (which can cause liver damage).
If you want to be proactive in keeping your best friend healthy this year Eyemunity is the perfect product. It contains Epicor an all natural immune booster that will not only improve your dog’s overal health but also help prevent tearstains. Click here for more information on this product
But the winter is not all bad news, many people, and dogs find the chill in the air invigorating. (I’m definitely not one of them, 20 years shoveling snow in in New York were enough for me:-) As a dog owner you not only have a loyal playmate but you have your own personal heating unit; your dog’s body temperature is a few degrees higher than yours so cuddle up and enjoy the exothermia!