Forecasts call for a chilly week ahead, with temperatures nearing negative ten degrees again this coming weekend…so what does this mean for your dog? ADOPT Animal Shelter manager Liz Bierman has several recommendations for keeping your pets safe in cold temps.
Stay on the Leash
“Making sure your pet is leashed at all times is huge. You never know what can happen in these cold temps, especially with all the snow. They often lose their sense of smell so even a dog that usually comes back to you may get lost with all the snow that’s blocking their sense of smell to get back to you.”
Threat of Hidden Water
The lurking threat of hidden ponds or other small pools of water also remain a danger to off-leash dogs, as does the cold ground and the salt cities lay down to help minimize ice formation on roads and sidewalks.
“Their paw can turn chaffed and they can get cut up from the ice and then from the salt that we put down as well – that can burn their paw pads as well. So you have to be really careful with how long they’re outside.”
Bierman recommends booties to protect paws, with stints outside of only 5 or 10 minutes when the temperatures plunge below zero. If the pet doesn’t like booties, be sure to gently wash the salt off their paws upon returning inside.
But what about active outdoor dogs temporarily confined all day inside?
“The winter is always difficult for those super active dogs because they can’t stay out long and they can’t do their activities but mental stimulation for dogs is huge and it can be just as exhausting as a regular physical.”
Training sessions, food puzzles and other small games are some of the tools owners have to spend a cold day inside with their pet best friend.
Reporting for Naperville News 17, I’m Kevin Jackman
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