How to enjoy snow with your dog

Snow offers dogs lots of fun. Jumping into snowbanks, catching snowflakes, making dog "angels", tasting snow ... to keep the fun from turning into trouble, you need to keep everything moderation and watch out for certain.

Perhaps you're familiar with it, many dogs go wild in snow. They run here and there, jump, stick their snout in it. Then there are dogs that start tasting the snow as soon as they see it and you can't tear them away from it. There are also dogs that refuse to walk into the snow.

If your dog loves eating snow, it's best to limit their intake. If a command or distraction don't work, you should reach for a muzzle. Excessive intake of snow can result in nausea (many dogs vomit from it), as well as a stomach cold and inflammation.

To prevent their paws from cracking, lubricate them with a special impregnating cream in winter; it will protect the bottom of their paws from salt and gravel. When you get home, wash their paws and apply balm for dog paws. If you don't want to deal with this, just get your dog some shoes. I've written more about taking care of dogs' paws here.

Of course, it depends on the breed of the dog and the conditions in which it lives, but for most dogs who live at home all year round it's best to buy them some clothes so they don't catch a cold in the snow. The thermal shock they experience every time they leave their heated home is truly great, and their body does not manage to acclimatize quickly enough to outside conditions. Especially small dogs should always have clothes.

If your dog likes jumping and playing in the snow, it would be a shame to deprive him of such fun. But don't let him play for too long so he doesn't get cold. Especially long fur is prone to the formation of frosty lumps. It's best to alternate this fun with a run so your dog can warm up before jumping into the snow again.

Fortunately, frostbite is quite rare. It usually affects the paws, ears and the tip of their tail. Dogs may get frostbite if they stay out in the cold for too long. The risk increases if they don't move. So you don't have to worry under normal conditions. Standing on a metal surface for a while can also result in frostbite, so it's best to avoid them. 

If you're planning a long trip, consider bringing a heating pad with you. You can heat it in a microwave and it will stay warm for up to 12 hours. If you don't happen upon a shelter on your way, or a mountain cottage where your dog can relax in the warmth for a while, a heating pad can be a great emergency option.

How are you enjoying the winter with your pets? Do you love snowy days, or do you prefer to stay in the warmth of your home? Do you have any tips that help you care for your dog in winter? I hope you enjoy the snow and make it through all the winter fun unharmed. Take care of yourself and your dogs, and have sensible fun.

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