We often don’t think of the various dangers that exist regarding our dogs, since we’ve taken the time to puppy proof and dog proof the house as soon as we brought our furry friend’s home. However, there are lots of things that go on in the winter, including some winter danger that could kill your dog. It’s important to know that every season has its set of challenges, but winter is right up there at the top. So you have to be careful.
Rock Salt Can Be Fatal
Rock salt is a common product used as a de-icer in winter, but it can be extremely harmful to your dog’s paws and more particularly, the pop pads. Don’t use this product if you have a dog at home. If the dog consumes enough rock salt, even when it has dissolved into a puddle, it can be extremely detrimental for your family companion. It may lead to dehydration and negatively impact the liver, the stomach lining, the pancreas and the kidneys. It’s easy for him to ingest it even when it gets caught on his for a while out on walks, as he may lick it off his for soon after getting inside. Therefore, wipe down your pet as soon as he gets indoors to remove any rock salt and large chunks of snow. If you suspect your dog has ingested a good amount of rock salt, take him straight to the vet because it can be fatal.
Windshield Wiper Fluid
For those who live in cooler climates, using windshield wiper fluid is very common in their cars. However, it is imperative to put it away, out of reach of your dog. Also, be very careful with any spillage of antifreeze or windshield wiper fluid. Your dog may lick his paws after having stepped on these chemicals. It is extremely toxic and less than 3 ounces can kill a small or medium sized dog. If your dog is behaving much like a drunk person, these are symptoms of poisoning that could lead to and death. If you suspect your dog has taken in either of these products, contact your vet or the ASPCA poison control hotline immediately. Inducing vomiting in your dog may be necessary.
Be Extra Careful as Winter Dangers Could Kill Your Dog
Candles and Holiday Decorations
When the weather outside is frightful, many of us turn to candles to make the home cozier, but these can be a huge problem with a dog. The long, happy wagging tails can easily knock over candles and cause a fire. Always place candles high enough to avoid anyone, as well as your dog, from bumping into them.
Along with winter come the winter holidays and the various decorations we use during this time. Many may look and smell like food to a dog, which can be extremely dangerous. For example, hooks used to hang ornaments may be swallowed. Swallowing an ornament hook may tear the insides of your dog, causing choking, etc. Tinsel may also lead to intestinal blockage.
Family and friends gather several times over the holidays, for a few drinks and some delicious meals. Unfortunately, some foods are fatal to dogs, such as those with high salt content. A dog who ingests too much salt may end up drinking an excessive amount of water and suffer from bloating. Food poisoning can result from bacteria coming from eggs or raw meat. Your dog may experience renal failure or kidney failure as a result of ingesting grapes or raisins. Any foods that contain xylitol are toxic to dogs, so keep peanut butter, sweets, and baked goods away from your dog. At the same time, both alcohol and chocolate may cause death to your dog. Be extra careful with bones, even if they have been placed in the garbage. These can cause choking, and if they splinter, they can cause damage the dog’s insides. Click the link to see the list of toxic foods for dogs.
Hidden Items in the Snow
Many dangers lurk under snow covered ground. For one thing, there can be choking hazards from food or trash. There could also be dangerous bacteria on food found outdoors. Also be careful when dogs step on waste that hasn’t been cleaned up. Later, he will likely lick his paws, which could lead to him getting parasites, so thoroughly clean your dog’s paws when returning home.
Hypothermia and the Outdoors
While it may be lots of fun to play in the snow, outdoor activities should be limited in winter time to avoid hypothermia in dogs. This is particularly the case for certain breeds that are more susceptible to a colder climate. As soon as you see a dog shivering, bring her dog inside and warm him up. If severe hypothermia occurs, the dog is not capable of regulating his own body temperature. This can be fatal! If you suspect hypothermia, contact your vet without delay.
Accidents and Icy Roads
Most of us don’t consider how dangerous the roads are when icy because we trust drivers to stop. However, many drivers do lose control in icy conditions, which can lead to you and your pet getting run over. Be sure drivers can see you. Ensure they are in control of their vehicles when you step on the street at a crosswalk. Be vigilant — there are many winter dangers that could kill your dog.