Dogs Trust: Experts issue advice on keeping dogs safe as UK faces snow and ice
and live on Freeview channel 276
Dog experts have issued advice on how to keep your dogs warm and safe during the cold, snowy weather.
As the Met Office issues yellow and amber weather warnings across the UK, we are set to face snow and ice as well as temperatures dropping in the coming days.
The bad weather can have an impact on our daily life, including walking our beloved pets.
Dogs Trust is urging dog owners to follow simple steps that will keep their furry friend safe.
The steps are as follows:
Although dogs still need their exercise, it is important to wrap them up during the colder months. Dogs Trust have advised owners to buy their dogs a sensible winter coat, however, as it may be a new experience for your pet, the coat may need to be introduced in a gradual and positive way. The trust has also recommended that owners should let the dog’s fur grow longer to give them added protection.
Keep your on the lead
During walks it is recommended by Dogs Trust to keep your dog on its lead in order to protect and prevent them from falling and hurting themselves in snow. It is also recommended that the dog is wearing a collar and their microchip details are up to date.
Wipe after walking
To ensure your dog's skin is not irritated by dampness and grit from the road, it is recommended to wipe your dog’s legs, feet and stomach after a walk during the winter.
Don’t let your dog walk on frozen ponds
Dogs should not be allowed to walk on frozen ponds as the ice may not be thick enough to take their weight, therefore pulling them under. If your dog does fall through ice, Dog Trust have issued a warning to not go after them but to encourage them to swim back to you and to call emergency services.
Antifreeze is highly poisonous to dogs, so antifreeze and other chemicals should be kept well out of reach, as well as mopping up any skills. Dogs Trust have recommended seeking veterinary advice if you think your dog has ingested antifreeze or other chemicals.
It is important for not only your dog's safety, but your own safety as well to remain visible during the darker period. Dogs Trust are asking owners to consider wearing a hi-vis jacket, and to provide dog’s with a reflective collar, lead, coat or flashing collar.
Check your lead
It is recommended to check the dog’s leads, collars and harness to ensure they are all fully functioning and won’t be damaged by winter weather. Dogs Trust are also recommending lead clips and carabiners to be attached indoors.
Consider indoor games
While it is great to get your dog out and about, during the winter months it may be better to give your dog some exercise from home. Dogs Trust have recommended active games such as hide and seek and ‘find it’, which are mentally stimulating for dogs. Long lasting chews and toys can also provide entertainment for them.
Manager of Dogs Trust Leeds, Emma Wakefield, explained why the above steps are important to follow during the cold months as she said: “Winter walks can be a lot of fun for both people and dogs alike, and many dogs love to run and play in the snow. But this cold weather brings with it some extra hazards for dogs and their owners."
She continued: “The good news is that there are lots of simple things you can do to help your pooch stay safe and warm during cold weather, including keeping your dog on a lead as conditions worsen, wiping their paws after a walk, and taking steps to improve both your own and your dog’s visibility.”
For more information on how to keep your dog safe and warm this winter, please visit the Dogs Trust’s website.