Walking Your Dog in Winter: Adapting Your Routine

Baby Henry at Broadway Tower on his first official walk (on the ground!) last January aged 14weeks!

Here at little Soap HQ we love nothing more than to step out into the great outdoors for a long and exhilarating dog walk. We love our little beasts and we know how important that daily walk is- and not just for our furry friends! Being outside and moving is amazing for the mind, body and soul and a daily dose of vitamin D is essential for maintaining health too. Now that winter is well and truly here (anyone else notice the sudden drop in temperature this week?) those dog walks are still just as important, but perhaps your routine needs a little tweaking to ensure they’re still as beneficial. This week we’re looking at the importance of walking your dog in winter, and how adapting your routine is key to staying safe, sane and healthy this season.

Keep up your dog’s beauty regime

Just as we need to adapt our beauty regimes depending on the change in season, your dog will also need a new care routine for winter. The mix of the cold air outside and warm central heating inside is just as perilous for a dog’s coat as it is for your own skin, so don’t even think about skipping your grooming routine. Our Little Beast pet shampoo contains lavender essential oil and moisturising apricot oil so it’s fantastic for ensuring your dog’s coat doesn’t dry out and stays healthy throughout the cold months ahead.

Some dogs are going to need a little extra TLC during winter, so be prepared. Your dog’s coat is going to need regular grooming and his skin will need to be moisturised regularly so it’s really essential that you don’t skip any parts of your usual routine, and always ensure you dry your dog thoroughly after a bath so that he doesn’t lose heat.

Take care of your dog’s paws

It’s important that you keep up with your dog’s grooming routine through winter, and it’s also a great idea to add a few extra elements too. When you take your dog for a walk in the winter, there are far more hidden dangers you need to protect against and be ready for. Snow and ice can not only mask hazards that your dog will no doubt find and investigate, but it can play havoc with delicate paws too. The salt that is often spread on ice can also be a problem for a dog’s paws, so taking good care of them is a must. Always rinse or wipe your dog’s paw to remove salt and to prevent him from licking it off! And if your dog is in pain or discomfort when you go outside for a walk, you might want to consider investing in some dog booties to keep his paws safe.

Tweak your walking routine

We all lead busy lives and this time of year things can seem even more hectic than usual, with Christmas preparations, work pressures and everything else that life throws at us on a daily basis. Being this busy often means that we fall into a habit of aways walking the dog at the same time because it fits in with everything else that we’re doing. And this is fine! But sometimes, your routine is going to need a little tweak.

As winter truly sets in and the light and temperature drops even further, your dog is going to feel it! It’s a great idea to move your dog walks to later morning when it’s a little lighter and warmer- so switch things around now if you need to and can.

Wrap up warm

When the temperature plummets, you reach for the winter coat, thick gloves and woollen hat, right? Because that’s what we do in winter- we wrap up warm and we get out there dressed for the season. The same goes for your dog too, especially if he doesn’t have a thick coat to give him a little extra insulation. When looking for a coat for your dog, remember that it will need to reach all the way from the neck to the base of the tail and to protect the belly too. We love these tweed coats! Very Cotswolds! It’s also worth remembering that even the thickest of dog coats won’t prevent frostbite on the ears, feet or tail so don’t stay out for too long while it’s really cold. This is a great guide to measuring your dog for his coat.