Out with your dog: A snow dog in boots
Free Press Pet Columnist
Editor’s note: “Out with your dog” is a monthly pet-friendly column, in which Free Press writer Caitlin Row discusses the many facets of loving and caring for family pets. A variety of topics (one each month) will be explored — from pet-friendly hotels to pet estate planning, and everything in between. Have a topic you’d like discussed? Want to weigh in? Email email@example.com.
A few weeks back, we took along my best beasty, Juliette, on a high-elevation snowshoe hike.
She loved it; well everything except the snow buildup between the pads of her paws.
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So, right after the hike, we stopped by Chow Down Pet Supplies in the Redlands to pick up a large-sized set of Ultra Paws — essentially snow boots for dogs.
The very next week, we tried them out by taking her to the same location (where packed trails gave way to loose powder in sections). She bounded about for well over an hour, did not get an icy buildup on her paws, and only lost boots twice when she headed into deep snow (we just strapped them back on; they are secured with Velcro).
The Ultra Paws were close to $40, but well worth the expense when seeing my dog happily run around in the snow.
Other items that will supposedly help with paw/ice buildup include petroleum jelly (slathered over the paws and between the pads), something called Musher’s Secret paw wax, or even Pam spray, I recently read online.
According to an ASPCA.com article titled “Protect Your Pet’s Paws from Cold Weather Dangers,” there are a variety of things you should be doing for your dog’s paws when recreating during the winter months.
“First, keep your pet’s paws clean and dry after walks and time spent outside in the cold,” the article said. “Bring a towel on long walks to clean off stinging, irritated paws. After each walk, wash and dry your pet’s feet to remove ice, salt and chemicals — and check for cracks in paw pads or redness between the toes. Massaging petroleum jelly into your pet’s paw pads before and after going outside will help moisturize and protect them.”
So far, the snow boots are working well for my dog, but I’d be curious to hear if any of the above items work just as well or better.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your winter pet tips.
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Whether in the sky or intensive care unit, Dan LeVan routinely cared for sick or injured members of the U.S. Armed Forces.