Winter is upon us, and for the 46 million households in the United States with dogs, that means it's time to start thinking about winter grooming. While it may just seem like an aesthetic component of having an animal, pet grooming is an integral part of pet health care, and helps keep your dog happy and healthy, with less unnecessary trips to your veterinary practice or pet hospital.
Here's what you can do to ensure your pup is as clean, warm, dry, and happy as possible this winter:
Protecting the Paws
No doubt about it, winter is a tough time to have paws. From mud to snow salt, there are a number of elements that can dirty, irritate and damage your pooch's paws. And considering your duty as an owner is to take your dog on at least one walk per day, the elements are often unavoidable.
Each time your dog goes outdoors, you can effectively minimize problems by wiping down their paws every time they come inside. For added protection, you can purchase your dog protective booties or a wax coating for the pads of their paws that will protect them from the elements. The benefits of booties is that they prevent mud from being tracked around your home!
Baths and Grooming
Bathing your dog in wintertime is often a good idea, particularly for dogs with long or fluffy fur that is susceptible to matting or getting dirty in the snow.
However, it is essential that your dog be completely dry before going outside; wet fur can prevent your dog from staying warm. If you're unable to guarantee this, it is best to bring your dog in for pet grooming and therapeutic bathing services. Not only will your dog be clean, but they will be happy and relaxed!
Flea and Tick Detection
It is a common misconception to believe that dogs are no longer at risk for fleas and ticks once winter rolls around. To stay diligent, brush your dogs often and wash your pet's bedding frequently.
And regardless of the weather, don't forget to stay up to date on your pup's vaccines! Up until 16 weeks of age, puppies should be receiving vaccines every three to four weeks.