Labs and the COLD
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Thread: Labs and the COLD

  1. #1
    lablover88 is offline Member
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    DefaultLabs and the COLD

    I live in North Dakota (it's only temporary), and, needless to say, it's freezing here. This is my second winter here, and each year I've really struggled trying to keep my dog active. It is currently about 10 below. The snow never melts, and the ground will be covered with a thick layer of ice until April! My lab is VERY active. He is used to getting walks everyday.....his walks consist mainly of getting him to a large open field so that he can RUN! So, just trying to take him for leash walks in the winter is not really all that effective for his energy level. I would really like to hear any suggestions about how I can effectively exercise my dog in the cold weather while still being cognizant of his paws. After our 10 minute walk today, he already had a little cut on his paw that was bleeding. I worry that the severe weather could damage his paws. In the past, I've just put boots on him, but they are uncomfortable for him, a pain for me to get on him, and decrease his ability to run!

    Any thoughts on the matter?

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  3. #2
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    georgie is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    I was going to suggest boots but you are right, they are a pain & Molly hates them. But I know the ice can be bad. Molly sliced her paw pad really pad last year on the ice. There isn't a whole lot you can do with ice & weather that cold. The bad thing is my two labs love the cold weather & playing in the snow. I just watch them & limit running when there is alot of ice.

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    lablover88 is offline Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    Yeah, I had the exact same experience. Bailey cut his paw really bad on some ice and actually ended up breaking his toe. It was a long drawn out ordeal....hence my worries over his sensitive paws!

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  6. #4
    Scout and friends Guest

    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    I'm going to try Musher's Secret. Bob Pr. put a link to where you can order it online in the thread "Exercise in the winter", Lab Health and Nutrition.

    Scout is usually fine on the snow trails at the park we walk, but walking the streets around our house hurt her feet - the frost in the pavement along with the sand and salt hurt her feet.

  7. #5
    lablover88 is offline Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    What types of symptoms are you noticing on Scout's paws? Are they just dry/raw? Or, do they bleed? For Bailey, you'd never know that his paws were making him uncomfortable because the second he gets outside he is running and playing. He acts like he could stay out there forever. I, on the other hand, lose all feeling in my fingers and toes within the first five minutes! I guess my point is that the cold weather doesn't seem to bother him, but when I get him back inside and examine his feet, I notice the cracks and bleeding. I think I might look into Musher's Secret some more, as well. I started using Tuff Paws on him, but I haven't given it enough time to notice a difference.

  8. #6
    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    Here's a link:

    http://www.kvvet.com

    Then enter "Mushers Secret" into their search box.

    And here's the thread that Scout mentioned in which several people mentioned their use of Musher's Secret:

    https://www.justlabradors.com/forum/i...c,63278.0.html

    I would really like to hear any suggestions about how I can effectively exercise my dog in the cold weather while still being cognizant of his paws.
    Stay away from rough ice as much as you can (ice that's had a lot of traffic, melted some and refrozen with sharp surfaces). Look for snow areas that haven't had any/much traffic on them so that the surface is largely soft and if not soft, then at least fairly smooth and not jagged. Musher's Secret is great for soft and granular snow (as well as protecting against snow-melt chemicals).

    If there are sharp pieces of ice on the ground that must be walked on, I don't see any alternative except the boots.
    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

  9. #7
    TimC. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    Everybody else has said what I was going to say. For my two cents I would say get yourself a set of Yak Traks so you don't slip.
    Olie

  10. #8
    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    For my two cents I would say get yourself a set of Yak Traks so you don't slip
    .

    Yes. YakTrax work great for peeps when the ground's icy.
    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

  11. #9
    TimC. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Pr.
    For my two cents I would say get yourself a set of Yak Traks so you don't slip
    .

    Yes. YakTrax work great for peeps when the ground's icy.
    Spend the extra money and get the ones with the strap over the top, otherwise you will lose one and have to trek back and find it.
    Olie

  12. #10
    Caseys Mom Guest

    DefaultRe: Labs and the COLD

    Spend the extra money and get the ones with the strap over the top, otherwise you will lose one and have to trek back and find it.
    I can second that. LOL
    The rubber on the Yak Trax Pros also holds up to cold (subzero) temperatures much better than the plasticy stuff on the regulars.

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