Winter can be just as hard on our pets as it is on us. Dogs who are exposed to excess cold can develop respiratory, sinus and skin problems, as well as painful joints.
Pawl B More, Australia’s first pet health expert “spokesdog” for PAW has shared his top five tips on how to keep your dog happy and healthy this winter.
- Keep them warm
This one might be obvious, but it’s important that you protect you pets from winter’s icy wind, especially if your dog has a short coat or doesn’t have a lot of body fat. Rug up your pup with a cool coat or jacket; not only will it give your pup street cred, it will keep them warm.
Osteoarthritis is one of the most common conditions affecting older dogs and colder weather can make it worse.
Consult your vet about ways to manage your dog’s condition. As arthritis becomes more advanced, your vet might recommend additional natural pain relief. For example, green lipped mussel can help reduce joint pain and inflammation, omega fatty acids, antioxidants and glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) can also provide fast and effective pain relief from arthritic symptoms for your pet.
Being cold puts extra stress on our bodies… and the same goes for our pets. This can lead to a reduced immune function and a greater susceptibility of them getting sick, especially when it comes to puppies and older dogs.
Pawl says, “Help boost your dog’s immune system with antioxidant rich ingredients such as, blueberries and alkalising ingredients like spirulina and kale to maintain wellness and vitality. Pet multivitamins can also be kangaroo based, making them a ripper of a treat!”
- Keep their noses wet & coat conditioned
With Winter comes a dry air that will turn your dog’s nose from wet to dry, and even cracked.
“Dry pup noses are generally accompanied by itchy, flaky skin; calluses and cracked paw pads. Talk about miserable!” Pawl says.
Get a hydrating oinment, which is rich in Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids which will help your pup’s skin survive the temperature drop.
- Clean Ears:
Winter makes dogs more susceptible to developing ear infections. Wetter weather and colder climate can allow moisture to seep into their ear canals, and left unchecked or uncleaned, can result in painful ear infections caused by yeast and bacteria growth.
- Guard against infection:
“Dogs explore with their noses, and with our noses being more susceptible to cracking in Winter, it’s important we protect those cuts from the bacteria that a moist, open wound invites,” Pawl says. Manuka Wound Gel can be used as a protective barrier, providing a medical grade dressing with natural oils and waxes to help prevent run off as well as prevent the development of potential infection.