Keep your dog warm and healthy all winter

Chances are you know not to leave your dog in the car in the summer. But what about in the winter? Whether you’re taking your dog for a walk or just spending time cuddling inside, keep these tips in mind to keep your pet healthy all winter.

When is it too cold to take your dog for a walk?
It’s no secret that Canada has one of the most severe winter climates in the world. Throughout the winter months, you should ask yourself questions like:

• Is my dog picking up their feet while walking?
• Is their tail tucked between the legs?
• Do their ears feel cold or rigid?

If you answer “yes” to any of these questions when you’re out and about with your dog, bring them indoors, set them up in a warm space, offer them water, and dry their paws if needed. If your dog is showing signs of skin discoloration, sensitivity to touch, blisters, or ulcers, consult your veterinarian. Remember, if it’s too cold outside for you, it’s probably too cold for your dog, too.

What’s an ideal thermostat setting for your pet?
Staying warm and cozy during winter months is often a top priority for Canadians, but too much heat can be harmful for pets. Generally speaking, it’s safe to set the temperature between 20 and 22°C to ensure your pet doesn’t overheat, especially if you have a large or long-haired dog. Always provide your dog with a spacious area in the house with a comfortable bed and blanket.

How do you prevent your dog’s paws from cracking?
Salt and other de-icing products can irritate your dog’s paws and cause them to crack. When you return indoors after each outing, wipe their paws dry and apply a non-chemical soothing agent. You can purchase a paw balm or make your own using natural ingredients like coconut oil, shea butter, or olive oil. It’s best to consult your trusted veterinarian before using any natural formula on your dog’s paws. Dog boots are another great alternative — just make sure you get the correct size to prevent skin irritation.

Protect your dog with pet insurance
In the event that your pet suffers from an ice or snow related injury, you’ll want to focus on their recovery, not the burden of vet bills — and pet insurance can help. Consider coverage for accidents, illness, exam fees, dental, alternative therapy, surgeries, medication and preventive care. Connect with our pet insurance partner Petsecure to discuss basic inexpensive coverage to care for your pet.

Call Petsecure: 1-800-268-1169
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