It’s so important to protect dog paws during the winter in order to prevent a number of common complications. Everything from dry, irritated, bloody paw pads, to illness related to chemical deicers can be prevented. Here’s a look at some of the most common ailments caused by winter weather, as well as how you can help protect your dog's paws so that they remain happy and healthy all winter long.
1. Dry, Chapped, Flaky, Irritated Paw Pads
Let's be real, ice, snow and cold can be especially hard on dog paws. Your dog's pads may become dry, chapped, itchy, flaky and frostbitten due to walking directly on cold snow, ice or slush. Imagine walking barefoot in the snow, your feet would start to suffer the consequences too.
How to Prevent & Treat
Inspect your dog's pads: Just as you would before a summer hike, examine the paw pads closely to ensure there are no injuries that your winter adventure might aggravate.
Trim your dog's nails: It's always a good idea to keep your dog's nails neatly trimmed to avoid a broken nail.
Suspender Boots are a great new option. Not only do they provide full leg + paw protection, but they're also connected so you'll never lose a boot. You can check them out here and get 15% off your order.
If your dog’s paws are already chapped, dry, irritated or bleeding you need something to restore moisture and heal damaged skin. All natural and vegan Paw Soother does just that thanks to the soothing anti-inflammatory and moisturizing properties packed inside.
2. Chemical Burns from De-Icers
De-icers are commonly applied to sidewalks, driveways and roadways in order to help melt and remove snow. The chemicals in deicers are one of the greatest threats to your four-legged BFF every winter. Deicers can cause burned paws, or illness if your dog licks the chemicals off of their paws.
How To Prevent & Treat:
Steer clear of city sidewalks: Hit up a more remote trail in a local park.
Use PawTection: It provides a natural barrier against the elements, including deicers. Apply "PawTection" before going outside to help prevent the risk of chemical burns or other damages caused by deicers.
Keep a bowl of water and a towel at your door: Then soak and wipe your dog’s paws clean before coming back inside. This will help remove any deicing residue that could otherwise end up dangerously ingested by your dog.
3. Ice Balls on Furry Paws
If your dog has lots of fur between their paw pads you may notice ice balls forming between the pads and toes. This can lead to very sore paws and a greater likelihood that deicers get caught up and ingested.
How to Prevent & Treat:
Use dog paw wax: Sled-dog owners will tell you that a great way to prevent ice balls from forming on dog paws is to prevent snow from adhering to them in the first place. "Mushers Wax" helps snow from sticking and is nontoxic should your pup try to lick it off. * Note paw wax adheres more readily to clean paws.