Did you know that January is ‘walk your dog’ month? During the winter, it’s easy to get in a rut and not spend as much time outside. If you and your dog have the right gear, taking a winter stroll can be something to look forward to, rather than a chore. Here are five essentials to make winter dog-walking a breeze!
1. Waterproof boots/ shoes
A nice, durable pair of boots isn’t only a good thing for us as people, but for our pets too! Although many dogs get through fine without them, others can really benefit from them. For example, older dogs not only tend to get cold easier, but they don’t always have the best traction on the ice. Having that rubber layer on the bottom of their foot can really lend a helping hand when walking across a slippery surface. Not to mention, boots will keep the snow and ice from getting packed into their paw pads!
2. Winter coat
Now, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know we need coats in the winter. But what about our dogs? Of course a big Great White Pyrenees wouldn’t need a coat, as they are made for the snow! On the other hand though, a short-haired chihuahua would be shaking like a leaf in freezing temps. There are many different kinds of coats that you can choose from, that way you can find what fits best for your pup! Pictured above is an insulated, water resistant dog parka. Although this kind of coat is a bit more on the expensive end, they are well worth it as they can last a lifetime!
3. Reflective Gear
Wearing reflective gear ensures that you and your dog will be seen when traveling in the dark. This is especially prominent in the winter because there are less daylight hours. There are many different things you can choose from including reflective vests, flashing pet blinkers, reflective leads, etc. Whether you’re taking a hike through the woods or just a walk around your neighborhood, it’s never a bad idea to have one extra safety precaution!
4. Pet Friendly Ice Melt
Because of all of the snow, many people start putting salt down in the winter. Something a lot of people don’t realize is how harsh most chemical ice-melts really are. They can damage lawns, sidewalks, etc. If it can damage the sidewalk, it wouldn’t have any trouble irritating your pets paws. Choosing a non-toxic, pet-friendly ice melt is definitely the way to go to protect your furry friend!
5. Travel-size First Aid Kit
Last but not least, a travel size first aid kit. Although this is good to have year round, there is more risk for your dog to slip or fall in the winter time. Ice can also become very sharp and could cut or split paw pads. In moments like this, when you could be pretty far from home, it’s a huge relief to be prepared with supplies on hand. You know what they always say, better safe than sorry!
As you can see, this list is compiled based off of pet safety, and anything that can help you and your pet get through this winter. Dog safety as pet owners is of course our top priority, and it is our duty to make sure we are prepared for what is to come. Now get out there and have a snow-filled adventure with your mind at ease!