Winter Grooming is a Must for Your Dog –

By: Tracey Zysk, Doggie Columnist – February, 2014

dog_bathSnow, sleet, showers are all part of a typical New England winter. These conditions can be cold, frigid, and in some cases just downright freezing. However, even in these winter months, maintaining your pet’s grooming routine is very important.

Some of the areas that need to be part of a grooming routine are the following:

1. Bath- yes, give your dog a bath. As your dog is rolling around in the snow his fur is becoming matted, wet and tangled. Not to mention, salt and sand can be stinky. As long as your room is at a warm temperature and your dog is thoroughly dried off, bathing in the winter is just fine.

2. Clean the Paws- When your dog comes in from outside, take a towel and clean the paws immediately. Sand, salt, and dirt can become caught in between the pads and cause irritations, cuts or even an infection. Also, don’t forget to trim back the fur that grows on the paws. This is commonly overlooked in the winter but needs to be done regularly.

3. Trim the Nails- Don’t forget to trim your dog’s nails. When dogs run around outside and walk on tarred areas, this naturally helps keep your dog’s nails maintained. In the winter months your dog may not be outside as much and his nails will not be getting the proper trimming that is needed.

4. Fleas Happen – Even in the winter, those little creepy crawlers are still around. Maintain the use of your flea preventative all year.

5. Teeth- Don’t forget to give your dog’s teeth a good cleaning. You can do this easily yourself with dog toothpaste and a toothbrush. Or you can consult your veterinarian about a professional dental cleaning.

If you are uncomfortable doing this or you do not have the time, please consult your local groomer. Keeping up with these basic steps will help ensure your dog to remain happy and healthy. Many grooming salons even run winter time specials to help encourage you to keep your dog on a routine.