Is it OK to walk my dog outside in the winter?

Is it OK to walk my dog outside in the winterANSWER: Walks outside may need to be shorter and make sure you rub and clean your pet off when you return, as they may pick-up chemicals from the ground that has been applied for deicing. You may also want to trim long hair between toes, as they will cake-up with snow.

Arthritic and older pets may have increased difficulty walking on snow and ice and may be more prone to slipping and falling. Long-haired or thick-coated dogs tend to be more cold-tolerant but are still at risk in cold weather. Short-haired pets feel the cold faster, and short-legged pets may become cold faster because their bellies and bodies are more likely to come into contact with snow-covered ground. 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 maybe more susceptible to difficulties from temperature extremes. The same goes for very young and very old pets. If you need help determining your pet’s temperature limits, call us.

As for apparel, yes sweaters do help keep your pet insulated and warm as well as booties will help protect their feet as well as provide traction.

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