Keep your dog warm this winter - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Keep your dog warm this winter

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ROCHESTER, Minn.  (KTTC) -- Though Thursday might have felt like a bit of a heat wave, cold temperatures have kept humans bundled up in the last few weeks.

As ridiculous as it sounds to those who protest putting clothes on dogs, winter canine style is actually essential for some pint-sized pups. 

"Especially with our little breeds, their feet are really tender and really susceptible to getting cold," said Veterinarian Travis Einertson with Heritage Animal Hospital. 

Dog boots are one solution to fighting freezing paws. In fact, they're so popular this time of year, companies are having trouble keeping up with demand. 

"It's been hard keeping them in stock and to get more supplies. They go fast since the companies are on overload keeping up with production," said Lindsay Pint at Leashes and Leads in Byron. 

But getting your pet used to boots might be as difficult as keeping them on the shelves.

"I usually try leaving them on while they're in the house, let them get used to them," Pint said. 

"When you first start putting booties on a dog, they have a hard time getting used to them.
They have a hard time walking, it's almost like it paralyzes them," Dr. Einertson said. 

If your four legged friend isn't into boots, it's important to keep their paws clean. 

"They can soak up the moisture from the salt melt into those hairs, so that's a good area to try and clean out as thoroughly as you can," Dr. Einertson said. 

But to fight off the wind chill, do dog clothes really help?

"The other thing ... that I think is really beneficial, is a little sweater or a jacket," he said. 

"I think when you look at bigger dogs or dogs with really thick hair coats, I don't think it does that much. But some dogs still seem to like it."

While some with natural winter coats don't need to wear them, for smaller pups, boots and coats might take a bit of getting used to.

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