As we prepare for Autumn and winter what do we have to do to prepare for dogs over winter. ?
As winter approaches you may notice your dog is hungrier than usual. This is because they use up their fat stores to keep warmer on walks, so if your dog starts to look thin give your dog more food. If your dog is a working gun-dog, you will need to give it 3 meals a day. The Vizsla expels lots of energy keeping warm. If your dog looses weight and you are feeding more food, then give quality fats from beef in the diet and your dog will put weight on, or beef tripe fat.
Coming up to autumn your dog may require a coat to keep warm. We use our selves Hurta, Hotter and Equafleece for our dog coats.
If you are walking your dog in the dark you can buy reflective collars, I now make these which are idea for late evening walks. But also you can purchase lights to go on the dog. You can interchange collars if you wish to have a day time collar and put on the reflective one evening walks.
Please give me notice to make collars as I am busy at the moment. They come in high viz orange, high viz yellow, blue, black, green.
A flash light is valuable to see where the dog has gone to the toilet.
As it gets colder and we can get icy mornings, remember roads get salted and so do pathways. Salt is highly poisoness to dogs, so wash their paws in warm water when you get home so they can not lick the paws. Or use dog boots to stop cracks of pads. Ruff wear sell good boots.
Paw wax is a good idea if your dog is prone to cracked pads. Cracked pads can be caused by salt on pathways or just frozen ground. If it is frozen ground do not throw balls for the dog, as the dog skids it can damage nails, and pads, and it can also cause joint pains.
Water bowls outside freeze, so ideally have a bowl of water in the house. Do not let your dog eat large chunks of ice as it can cause a spasm in the gut. If your dog lives in a kennel you can put a tsp of glucose in the water to stop freezing. But change water frequently.
Do not let your dog run across frozen iced ponds, rivers, lakes. It could give way, and its up to you to stop the dog. Put the dog on the lead if it keeps going on the ice. Many owners have died retrieving dogs from frozen lakes.
Mrs Rachel Savage