Dog paw safety in the winter is very important if you live in a cold climate. The ice and snow pose inadvertent hazards to your dog’s paws. Rock salt is a common method of melting ice and snow which is great for human’s safety. However, rock salt poses a danger to your dog’s paws. Let’s discuss what rock salt is, how to safely remove it from dog’s paws, and other ways to protect your dog’s paws in the winter.
Dangers of Rock Salt For Dogs
Rock salt (also known as sodium chloride) is dangerous to dogs. The salt crystals cause irritation and burning on your dog’s paws. I’m sure you have heard your dog immediately yelp in pain after walking over salted areas. The poor baby! Luckily, the burn doesn’t last longer than a minute, but that’s a long time to be in pain.
Clean Salty Paws
Avoiding rock salt altogether is ideal for dog paw safety. It is important to thoroughly wash your dog’s paws to get the rock salt off. If they take matters into their own hands (well, paws), they might try to lick off the salt. Ingesting rock salt can cause problems for your dog.
Don’t Let Your Dog Lick Salty Paws
It is imperative to wash salt off of your dog’s paws. Don’t allow them to lick their paws to remove the salt. If they ingest high levels of salt, it can lead to vomiting or diarrhea. Further, they could burn their mouth as the salt transfers from paw to mouth. Yikes!
If your dog has licked their salty paws, keep an eye on them. If you see any problematic symptoms, call your vet as soon as possible. The best way to eliminate salt toxicity is to avoid it altogether.
Protect Your Dog’s Paws
The best way to eliminate salt toxicity is to avoid it altogether. It can be difficult to avoid salty roads and well-salted walkways in icy areas. Therefore, the best way to protect your dog’s paws is with dog booties or to seal their paws with wax.
Dog booties are basically shoes for dogs. They sound like a great idea and they can be. After all, these coverings keep the salt away from your dog’s paws. Thus, no burning or irritation. Further, they keep their paws nice and clean! You won’t have to worry about cleaning off the rock salt. They sound perfect.
Unfortunately, dog booties are not generally accepted by most dogs. Let’s face it, dogs are not used to wearing shoes. Putting these foreign articles of clothing might deter them from walking. Nonetheless, dog booties are still worth a try. For the small price, you might as well give them a chance. Just don’t buy high end dog booties until you know whether or not your dog will tolerate them.
The best dog paw safety in the winter advice is to invest in Musher’s Secret. This is a waxy substance that is applied to your dog’s paws to seal them. Therefore, rock salt will not penetrate the wax which will allow your dog to walk pain-free in wintery conditions.
This wax is non-toxic so you don’t have to worry about ingredients seeping into your dog’s skin or what will happen if they lick their waxy paws after a walk. And since it is a thin layer of wax vs. doggie shoes, you have a better chance of actually walking your dog with Musher’s Secret.
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