Taking care of your dogs paws during the winter

Winter Proofing Your Dogs Paws

Winter can be harsh for us all, but could you imagine going outside without any shoes? Well our dogs do!!

Snow and ice in winter can damage the pads of your dogs paws. Exposed to the elements and other substances such as grit, salt and any chemicals that may be on the ground, the paw pads are at risk of drying out and cracking and dogs can even suffer from frostbite.

To help protect your dogs paws in these circumstances I would recommend using a protective paw balm and I’ve got some details here for you on how to prepare your dogs paws to minimise any harm and discomfort.

Whilst The Scented Owl paw balm has been designed using 100% natural ingredients, it is still important to make sure the paw is ready before using any paw balm!

Good grooming is essential for healthy winter feet, which I know from having a Sprocker spaniel who has a lot of feathering on her feet all year round! Trim the hair around the paws to ensure it does not come into contact with the ground, and keep the hair between the paw pads short so that it is even with the pads. This will prevent ice balls forming between and around the paw pads which can be painful for your dog.

Keeping the hair short also makes it easier to apply paw balm to the pads. It is equally important to keep your dogs nails trimmed, as long nails will force the paw to splay out leaving the paw vulnerable and allowing snow and ice to accumulate between the pads.

I would recommend using a thin, even layer of paw balm just before going out on your winter walk, however be careful not to apply too much as the paw still needs some roughness for traction.

After your walk wipe/wash your dogs paws with a warm cloth to remove any snow or ice, it is also important to remove any salt or chemicals they may have on their feet, follow this by applying another thin layer of paw balm to help soothe any irritation and keep the pads from drying out.

Please note dogs can be as susceptible to frostbite & hypothermia as people are, so a top tip is to use common sense as to how long your walks should be, and remain aware of early signs of hypothermia such as shivering, anxiety & slowed movement.