Does the winter cold bother you?
If it does, we’re pretty sure you’re thinking about protecting your Labrador from the weather, too. While some animals hibernate during this season, the chilly early morning and late night walks are absolutely necessary for your Labs.
There are a lot of factors to consider to ensure their well-being. Here are most fundamental:
- Age — less than 6 months of age vs. senior
- Breed — toy vs. working
- Overall health — any pre-existing conditions
- Animal size
- Coat type — thin vs. double-coated / heavy-coated
- Moisture — dry vs. rain / sleet
- Shelter (type, condition, bedding and insulation) for a primarily outdoor animal
Considering the list above, you must determine if your dog is naturally equipped against the cold of winter, or if you must protect them as you would yourself before heading out into the elements.
Let’s say your Lab is healthy enough to head outside in the winter, there are two main dog body parts that must be protected from the winter air. First is the feet, particularly the pads, and the second is the core, or the thorax or chest. These areas offer easy exposure to the elements.
Dress up your dogs with booties to protect their feet from salt, moisture, and potential frostbite. Sweaters or jackets can protect their chest and vital organs. This gears is available in most pet stores. They are even available online!
Also, their feet should always be cleanedand dried after returning from a walk or playtime in the snow, especially when their feet were not protected with booties. Also, make sure their sweaters are removed when they’re in well-heated homes.