WINTER CARE FOR YOUR DOG'S COAT
Just like people, pets' cold tolerance can vary from pet to pet based on their coat, body fat stores, activity level, and health. Be aware of your pet's tolerance for cold weather, and adjust accordingly. You will probably need to shorten your dog's walks in very cold weather to protect you both from weather-associated health risks.
Pets with diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, or hormonal imbalances (such as Cushing's disease) may have a harder time regulating their body temperature, and may be more susceptible to problems from temperature extremes. The same goes for very young and very old pets. If you need help determining your pet's temperature limits, consult your veterinarian.
Let’s talk temperature!
Some dog breeds are blessed with thick fur that keeps them warm naturally, even in very cold temperatures, but dogs with thin coats may need to wear a sweater or coat when out for winter walks. A good coat should reach from the neck to the base of the tail and also protect the belly. But remember that coats will not prevent frostbite on the ears, feet or tail, so even with a cozy coat, don’t keep your short haired dog out too long in freezing temperatures.
Go out in the sun.
Spend time playing outdoors while it’s sunny, sunshine brings the added benefit of providing both you and your pet with vitamin D. Play fetch with toys, not sticks, which can cause choking and other injuries. So, if your dog likes to chew and chase, pack a Frisbee, ball or other safe toys and play together in the sun.
In addition to limiting your dog’s time outdoors on cold days, don’t let your pooch sleep on a cold floor in winter. Choosing the right bedding is vital to ensure your dog stays warm. Warm blankets can create a snug environment; raised beds can keep your dog off cold tiles or concrete, and heated pet beds can help keep the stiffness out of aging joints. Place your dog’s bed in a warm spot away from drafts, cold tile or uncarpeted floors, preferably in a favorite spot where she sleeps every day so that the area doesn’t feel unfamiliar.
Adjust Their Food If Necessary
If you do find that your dog is less active in the winter months, make sure you adjust the amount of food you give them accordingly to avoid weight gain.
Your home’s furnace or central air system emits dry heat. This low humidity environment can rob your dog’s skin of necessary moisture, which results in dry, flaky, and sensitive skin. While it is true that your dog’s body continually replaces the layer of damaged skin, however, if left unmanaged, the condition will continue throughout the winter. Damaged skin and your dog’s relentless scratching to relieve her itch can open the door for more serious skin problems. You can use, for example Oh My Dog Premium Oatmeal & Itch Relief Shampoo for better results.
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