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Important Winter Survival Tips
    Looks like we won't see spring for another few weeks so while we continue to brave the snow and cold here are a few tips for helping our pets survive the winter.  

    1. Sweaters can help dogs stay warm in the cold weather but most of the dog's body heat is lost through his ears and pads on his/her feet.  Instead, you can invest in some waterproof "doggie boots," "paw safe" melters, or a wax that seals cracked paws.  This is to prevent the salt from stinging.  To protect our puppies, it is recommended their feet be washed after coming inside.

    2. Antifreeze and rock salt are dangerous for pets.  Unfortunately, antifreeze tastes and smells sweet attracting animals to it.  If you suspect your animal has antifreeze poisoning take your animal to the veterinarian immediately.  Rock salt is not deadly, but can cause problems to pets with kidney disease. Also, check your pets paws.  Salt crystals can get trapped.

    3. Dissuade dogs from sleeping in front of the radiator or fireplace.  It may be cozy but also contributes to flaky and itchy skin.  To help prevent dry skin:

a. Brush his/her coat often removing dead skin and dander.

b. Bathe your dog every 4-6 weeks.  Dogs need to be bathed less in the winter because it can strip the coats natural oils.  Be sure to rinse thoroughly.  If not rinsed well the skin may become irritated.

c. Use a moisturizing conditioner and shampoo specifically made for       dogs.  Human products are too harsh.  

d. When going to a groomer request a special shampoo and conditioner to be used.

e. Diet can affect your dog's skin and coat.  Fatty acids and vitamin A are necessary in your dog's diet to maintain healthy skin and glossy coat.

f. Excessive scratching could indicate a more serious problem.  Your veterinarian should be called.  They may prescribe a medicated shampoo or other medications to relieve the itching.

    4. Do not keep your pet in a car.  If you need to make sure you have a blanket but do not leave the car running.  Your pet may accidentally put the car in gear.

Yes! This has happened.

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