Winter is just around the corner. But are your dogs prepared to embrace the cold?
While it’s common to think that your furry pal’s coat is enough for them to stay comfortable in the winter, other dog breeds have more difficulty in adjusting to low temperatures. Dealing with a dog during winter time can be sometimes messy, especially if it’s long-haired. Be sure to prepare the appropriate gear and adjust your grooming routines. Here are a few winter tips for grooming hairy dogs.
1. Protect those furry paws.
As explained in a past article here on DogPerDay, your dog needs to wear boots before going out into the snow. This is because winter conditions increase the risk of your dog’s paws in terms of developing dryness, frostbite, and cracking. If your pooch has particularly hairy paws, the fur may collect snow as well. The purpose of the boots is mainly to keep the dog comfortable while out in the snow. They also help it tread on ice.
Keep in mind that your canine buddy may need time to adjust to the shoes. Let it walk around the house for a while until its legs are able to move naturally.
2. Brush your dog regularly.
The last thing your dog wants in the middle of winter is a full body shave due to clumps of matted fur. So be sure to brush down excess fur from time to time. Shelley Williams suggests on Animal Behavior College that keeping the coat in a breathable condition allows it to properly insulate the dog. Matted fur creates gaps in the coat, letting more cold air get to the dog’s body. To avoid this, a daily brushing session is recommended. Although, a weekly routine works fine, too. (Visit bestdoggear.reviews to learn more about effective grooming tools for Shih Tzus.)
3. Get your pooch a new haircut.
Most owners are hesitant to give their dogs a haircut in the winter, because the fur is supposed to keep them warm. While that may be true, you should also consider the fact that the pup would normally spend most of its time indoors. This means giving it a winter haircut isn’t entirely a terrible idea, particularly since long coats can get clumped like mentioned in the previous tip.
Do note, however, to take time in choosing the best groomer for the job. A groomer that handles your neighbor’s dog perfectly may not necessarily be able to do the same for your pooch. A blog post by Go Fetch shares several tips on choosing the right dog groomer. The first step is to ask around, get input from friends and family, and create a list of potential options. Call each one or visit their clinics prior to the grooming session. The latter is ideal so you can already gauge their handiwork by observing the other customers.
You might also consider a do it yourself approach, as there are now many professional dog grooming clippers out there to choose from that make it easier than it used to be.
4. Give your furry pal warm baths.
Since the dog will be staying indoors most of the season, its odor might fill up the place. To keep the smell at a minimum, give your dog a nice, warm bath. There’s no need to worry, as there is no harm in giving it a bath during winter. However, the Petcha blog warns that you should never let a wet dog step on snow because it will only worsen the dog’s body temperature.