The arrival of the winter season means it’s time to bundle up in warm jackets. With the chilly winter weather, many pet owners postpone their regular dog grooming routine until spring. But the belief that a dog’s winter coat should be allowed to grow long to protect and warm the dog during the winter months is actually a common misconception. Good grooming is just as important from December through March as a short cut is during the hot summertime. However, it’s the dog’s undercoat that needs all the attention during the winter. Long, matted and wet hair can even make the dog susceptible to infections.
Here’s a closer look at why dog grooming is still such a critical part of proper pet care in Bolivar, MO, even in the wintertime.
Keep the undercoat in good condition
Underneath your dog’s fluffy top coat is the undercoat. The undercoat works like your dog’s wool sweater by keeping them warm during the winter and cool during the summer. Many dog owners assume letting the hair naturally grow will better insulate their pup against the cold. However, the undercoat can become matted, dirty and mangy without regular grooming and bathing, though.
The undercoat needs to breathe, or else it will take a long time to dry, which will cause it to smell unpleasant and begin to mat. Matted fur doesn’t insulate or provide any warmth. Instead, the matting will cause pain and itchy hot spots. Excessive matting can cause a serious skin infection and is a hotbed for parasites, dirt and debris. If that’s not enough, your dog will be colder and more susceptible to illness. Regular grooming should be a routine part of your winter dog care in Bolivar, MO.
Protect their feet
All the snow, ice melt, dirt and debris of winter can wreak havoc on a dog’s paws. These seemingly harmless things can cause tiny, painful cuts on the paw pads, putting them at risk of infection. It’s also important to keep any excess fur between the paw pads trimmed. Most dogs will try to clean all the debris from their paws. Usually, this isn’t an issue, but snow melt and other common winter chemicals can become stuck in too-long paw fur, and these items can be toxic for pets when ingested.
Additionally, dogs’ nails don’t wear down the same way during the winter, as many of the usually abrasive roads are covered and ice and snow. Grooming is the only way to keep their nails in check.
Schedule winter pet care in Bolivar, MO
Grooming should always be a part of your dog’s care routine, regardless of the season. Not only is a good grooming regimen important to their physical health, but it can also help your dog’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. Don’t hesitate to contact the expert veterinary staff at the Animal Care Clinic of Bolivar to learn more about keeping your dog healthy and happy all year long. We look forward to working with you and your beloved pet!
This post was written by Writer