I recently saw a short article in Good Housekeeping where someone asked if they could put daily walks off until spring because it’s so cold outside. How fitting, considering the rather crummy weather we have had recently.
The article went on to say all the benefits of getting out there and walking for people, but it’s also good for your dog. Pets need their exercise year round as well, so get them out for a walk. Here are a few things to remember when walking in the winter:
1. Watch out for ice: we recently had rain with snow that made the roads and walkways very slippery. You and your pet can slip and become injured on slippery surfaces. Also, be wary of frozen ponds. If your dog runs free without a lease, he may not know where the solid ground ends and frozen water begins.
2. Use your leash: this may seem like common sense, but some dogs love to escape and run free. When there is snow on the ground, it is more likely a dog will not be able to use his nose to get back on track.
3. Be prepared: the days are shorter and with ice and snow on the roads and walkways, you should keep a flashlight nearby. Also, make sure your pet is fitted with a good collar or harness, preferably with identification tags in case you are separated from your pet. A microchip inserted under your pet’s skin is even better, just in case those tags come off. Any staff member at Grafton Animal Hospital can tell you more about the benefits of fitting your pet with a microchip.
The article claimed that daily walks in the cold can help ward off the blues, burn major calories and help tone many parts of the human body. Just think how good these walks can be for our dogs. Of course, the weatherman is calling for warmer temps this weekend so get out there and enjoy yourself. Your dog will also thank you.