Tip for your pets during winter: tip 2 of 6

Walking in the cold
Sidewalk ice melters like salt, magnesium, or calcium chloride can cause irritation to paws and are toxic when ingested causing stomach upsets, and if enough is ingested, nerve damage. To prevent salt from hurting your pet’s feet, we recommend using dog boots and a nontoxic ice melter for your own sidewalk. If your pet has walked on a salty area, wipe off his paws with a moist towel.

Veterinary Perspective…
Dogs’ footpads can be injured by harsh salt or sharp snow crusts. Instead of using ice melters like salt, magnesium, or calcium chloride, which irritate paws and are toxic when ingested, we recommend using a nontoxic ice melter. If your pet has walked on a salty area outside of your property, make sure to wipe off his paws with a moist towel and wait for them to dry before he goes out again.

Snowballs can be fun unless they are between the toes. Snow collecting between the toes of dogs can be very painful, and if large enough, obstruct blood flow to the toes. Help your pet remove these collections of snow while you are out walking. Dog boots will help eliminate this problem.

Thin ice on lakes is hazardous for people and animals. Keep your pet away from lakes or other bodies of water which may have thin ice.

In the northern United States, remember that snowmobile trails can be dangerous places. Be sure to keep your pets off of the trails.

Ice on walks is not only dangerous for us two-legged creatures, but for our four-legged friends as well. Slipping on the ice is of special concern for older dogs who may already be stiff due to arthritis.

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