The cold, wet, dreary weather that often accompanies winter can make you want to stay inside. While staying out of the elements is preferable, you still need to take your dog out for bathroom breaks and exercise. But going from warm to cold and dry to wet can take a toll on your dog’s coat and skin. Just because they grow longer fur during winter and tend to be less active does not mean you should forego good grooming practices.
Grooming Tips for Winter
1. Brush your dog regularly.
Many people let their dog’s coat grow a bit longer in winter for added warmth, but that also means more opportunity for fur to get tangled or matted. Continue to brush your dog regularly to distribute natural oils and get rid of any tangles. As spring nears, they will begin shedding their undercoat, so you also want to stay on top of removing loose fur.
2. Keep their coat dry.
When you come in from outside, use a soft, absorbent towel to wipe down your dog’s fur. Even if they are wearing a protective jacket, don’t forget about their paws and belly. You want to get rid of excess moisture before they’re exposed to the heat inside as this can dry out their skin even more.
3. Check their paws.
It is easy for rocks, sand, salt, and other debris from outside to get stuck between the pads in your dog’s paws. If you have been outside after a winter storm, rinse their feet off with warm water to help remove salty buildup, then gently dry them. Also check the length of their toenails. Since you’re likely spending less time outdoors, their nails might not be naturally getting ground down as much from the pavement. They may need a trim, especially if you hear them clicking on the floor when your dog walks.
Just like humans, dogs can get dry, itchy skin too. If your house tends to have dry air from the heat running or simply the weather, consider using a humidifier to add more moisture. When you bathe your dog, use a moisturizing shampoo that will soothe their skin. You can also get special balm for their paws and nose to help protect them from the cold air and irritation. Ensure that your dog has plenty of fresh water to drink as well to stay hydrated.
5. Schedule regular grooming.
Just because it is the winter and you’re letting your dog’s fur grow out a little longer doesn’t mean you should skip out on their regular grooming appointments. The groomer can help to keep their coat free from mats and tangles, trim it to the proper length, assist with de-shedding, give them a thorough washing, clip their nails, and more. Maintaining a healthy coat all year long is important.
Schedule your dog’s next grooming appointment at Lake Wylie Pet Resort to keep them looking their best. You can even coordinate their grooming to align with a day they will be boarded or here for doggie daycare. Contact us today to book your dog’s appointment.