First steps to keeping your dog warm this winter

dogs in snowIf the last few weeks of 2010 were anything to go by, winter has truly arrived in the UK, and as usual it has caught us all with our pants down and completely unprepared for it. As a nation, we’re not used to dealing with snow so when it comes to your dog, be sure your pet doesn’t suffer like the rest of the nation.

As the saying goes, failing to prepare is preparing for failure, so the first step in preparation is to invest in one or two items to help keep your dog warm when you’re taking him for walkies in sub-zero temperatures.

The first thing to spring to mind is a dog jacket. This is especially appropriate if he has short hair, is small, or is a senior dog. Dog jackets come in different thicknesses, and heavier coats are available for especially cold weather. When buying one, there are a couple of issues to consider.

One of the most important is the ease in which it can be put on your pet. As he may take a little time to become acclimatised to wearing a dog coat, you will want to make life easier by having a jacket that is easy to put on. It will be worthwhile letting him wear it for short periods through the day to let him get used to it, and it is worthwhile giving him a treat when putting it on him. If snow or rain is a consideration, look to get a waterproof coat.

If your dog is outside a lot or goes on long walks, you may wish to treat him to some dog boots. Dog booties can do a lot to help protect him from ice and snow, as well as salt and grit. The elements can be unkind to the pads on your dog’s paws, and dog boots can prevent dry, cracked and irritated pads.

These two items alone will make your dog walks far more pleasurable in the cold winter.