Prepping Your Dog for a Winter Adventure

Mushers Secret Prepping Your Dog for a Winter Adventure

Prepping Your Dog for a Winter Adventure

Adventures with your dog are the best kinds of adventures, especially ones in a winter wonderland! Taking your dog on a winter adventure could be a great experience for both you and your furry friend. Seeing the joy on their faces as they frolic through the snow is one of the most satisfying experiences and one that can create lifelong memories. However, as fun as they could be, they can also be very dangerous, so it’s important to do your research and be prepared before taking to the snow!

There are many tips and tricks to ensure a successful adventure. Here are some tips we feel are most important. 

Proper grooming.

Preparing your dog's coat for the cold is extremely important. Make sure you give your dog a good bath with moisturizing shampoo to keep their skin healthy and moisturized. Bathing helps restore essential oils to their skin. Once bathed a thorough brushing to remove loose hair is key. By brushing your dog’s you’re removing dead hair, which allows the growth of thick winter coats that will help keep your dog warm.

Protect your dog’s paws.

Musher’s Secret Dog Paw Wax is a great way to protect your dog’s paws from the snowy conditions. Musher’s Secret Paw Wax forms a breathable, dense barrier to protect your dog’s paws from the elements in even the most extreme weather conditions. We suggest applying a thin layer 2-3 times a week for maximum results all year round. In snowy conditions, additional applications may be necessary and to prevent snowballing rub up in between and around the pads. Not only does it aid in preventing snowballing, but frostbite as well!

Increase their calorie intake.

Depending on the circumstances and the climate of where you live, this tip may vary a little. If you live in an area where it’s cold all year round it’s best to keep your dog’s calorie intake higher than if you lived in a warmer climate. Your dog will burn more calories keeping warm. This is especially true of short haired and hairless dogs. If you live in an area that experiences seasonal winters, it’s smart to increase your dog’s calorie intake during those times. A higher protein diet is a good winter choice. You must feed your four legged friend more to keep them warmer.

Understand your dog and their coat.

Some dogs need more protection from the frigid cold than others. Unless your pup is a true winter dog, there is a good chance they will get cold, especially on those days when the temperature drops to or below single digits. BRRRR! Depending on how cold your dog gets, it may be a good idea to invest in a fleece or insulated jacket.

Pick a good trail.

It’s important to know your dog and what they can handle. If you are exploring in deep powdery snow, your dog might sink a little or all the way to his chest, causing them to start jumping up and down through the snow. As fun as this is for them it’s only OK for short periods of time. It can cause exhaustion and can accelerate hip problems, especially for dogs with hip dysplasia tendencies. When looking for trails, try finding ones where your dog can find some solid footing if needed.

Do your research and know the signs

Traveling through the winter wonderland with your dog can bring on some pretty dangerous circumstances. It’s extremely important to know what those threats are and what you can do to get out of them or even better avoid them. One of those big threats being in the cold is hypothermia. Some signs of hypothermia include uncontrollable shivering, dilated pupils, and slow breathing. If you see your dog experiencing these symptoms, warm your dog immediately with blankets or even your own jacket, get to a warm safe place, and contact your veterinarian immediately.

Of course, regardless of the weather conditions, always be sure to come equipped with a first aid kit and enough snacks and water to keep you and your four legged friend hydrated and fueled to go go go! 

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Are You Ready for Your Next Adventure?

Download the Ultimate Adventure Checklist now to help prepare you and your furry friend on your next exploration! Whether it’s hiking, backpacking, camping, or just a day at the beach, be prepared with all your dog’s essentials to ensure a fun and safe adventure.

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