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http://wwWinter’s chill still has its hold on most of the country, bringing with it special grooming concerns for dog owners. For example, should you bathe your dog when temperatures are low? How can you handle those muddy paws? Here are answers to those questions and a few more.

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Protecting Dog Paws From Winter Weather

No doubt winter weather is tough on paws. You can minimize problems such as cracked pads, irritation, infections from snow, salt, mud, rain, low temperature, and gravel simply by wiping the feet dry after every outing. Keep a towel handy by the door, and make feet wiping routine.

Be especially watchful for snow or mud balls between the pads. Also, thorough wiping reduces but does not eliminate muddy paw prints in the house.

Another option is using a cloth or rubber booties. Some dogs accept these items gracefully; others try to chew them off.

Winter Bath Time

Yes, it’s all right to bathe your dog in the wintertime. In fact, dogs sometimes need more grooming then. Longer, fluffier coats tend to mat, and walks through mud and snow are messy. If your dog is indoors to keep warm, you may be especially eager to bathe him to keep “doggie” odor to a minimum.

The dog must be completely dry before going outside, because a wet dog is more likely to become chilled. This is especially true of small breeds or those with short hair. Prolonged exposure to cold results in a drop in body temperature, or hypothermia, and it is most likely to occur when a dog is wet.

Avoid problems by giving the bath, say, after breakfast and the morning nature break. Bathe as usual, towel dry thoroughly, and keep the dog inside until completely dry. If you normally allow your dog to air dry, consider blow drying to speed the process.

Between baths, or if bathing with water is inconvenient, try dry cleaning. Sprinkle dry shampoo, available at pet supply stores, or a little cornstarch in the dog’s coat and brush it through. Be sure to brush out the excess powder.

Dog Winter Haircut

Some owners believe giving a dog a haircut — even breeds requiring regular trimming, such as the Poodle, West Highland White Terrier Schnauzer — during cold weather compromises the dog because it needs its coat to keep warm. While dogs need to keep warm, it’s also true most pets don’t live outdoors all the time; they’re usually snuggled up with an owner in a centrally heated house. House dogs don’t need to rely on long fur and a thick undercoat for warmth as wild animals or sled dogs do.

It is all right to give your dog a haircut in winter. If you’re concerned about your dog’s being cold on outings, consider a longer trim or a doggie sweater.

Dog Brushing

For untrimmed dogs, an extra-thick winter coat needs regular, perhaps daily brushing. Some dogs look their best in winter because the coat is so thick and luxurious, but it can mean more work for owners. Keep your dog’s coat in top condition by brushing daily to remove tangles, dirt and dead hair, and to increase skin circulation and distribute oil.

A dog’s winter coat can hide trouble, such as lumps, bumps or sores, which is another good reason to keep brushing regularly. As you brush, feel and look carefully for signs of illness. Call your veterinarian if you see anything suspect.

Dog Nail Trimming

If your dog is indoors more frequently in the winter, the nails may need extra trimming because it’s not outside running and romping to wear them down. Check weekly, and once you hear that “click-click” on the bare floor, you’ll know it’s time to trim.

Flea Control

Most owners welcome cold weather because it signals the end of the flea season. However, fleas can still hang on for months in a warm pet bed or doghouse. Don’t let your defense down just because it’s winter, especially if you live in a mild climate. Keep up your flea-control program all year.

No matter where you live, from sunny California to icy New York, keep these grooming tips handy for a healthy and cozy season for your dog.

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Cost – The annual cost of a small dog—including food, veterinary care, toys and license—is $420. Make that $620 for a medium dog and $780 for a large pooch. This figure doesn’t include capital expenses for spay/neuter surgery, collar and leash, carrier and crate.

Note: Make sure you have all your supplies before you bring your dog home.

Basic Care

Feeding – Puppies 8 to 12 weeks old need four meals a day. – Feed puppies three to six months old three meals a day. – Feed puppies six months to one year two meals a day. – When your dog reaches his first birthday, one meal a day is usually enough. – For some dogs, including larger canines or those prone to bloat, it’s better to feed two smaller meals.

Premium-quality dry food provides a well-balanced diet for adult dogs and may be mixed with water, broth or canned food. Your dog may enjoy cottage cheese, cooked egg, fruits and vegetables, but these additions should not total more than ten percent of his daily food intake.

Puppies should be fed a high-quality, brand-name puppy food. Please limit “people food,” however, because it can result in vitamin and mineral imbalances, bone and teeth problems and may cause very picky eating habits and obesity. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times, and be sure to wash food and water dishes frequently.

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Exercise – Dogs need exercise to burn calories, stimulate their minds, and keep healthy. Exercise also tends to help dogs avoid boredom, which can lead to destructive behaviors. Supervised fun and games will satisfy many of your pet’s instinctual urges to dig, herd, chew, retrieve and chase.

Individual exercise needs vary based on breed or breed mix, sex, age and level of health—but a couple of walks around the block every day and ten minutes in the backyard probably won’t cut it. If your dog is a 6- to 18-month adolescent, or if she is an active breed or mixed-breed from the sporting, herding, hound or terrier groups, her requirements will be relatively high.

Vaccinations
Puppies should be vaccinated with a combination vaccine (called a “5-in-1”) at two, three and four months of age, and then once annually. This vaccine protects the puppy from distemper, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parvovirus, and par influenza. A puppy’s vaccination program cannot be finished before four months of age.
If you have an unvaccinated dog older than four or five months, he will need a series of two vaccinations given two to three weeks apart, followed by a yearly vaccination.
Puppy vaccination and socialization should go together. Many veterinarians recommend that new owners take their puppies to socialization classes, beginning at 8 to 9 weeks of age. At this age, they should have received at least their first series of vaccines.

Heartworm  – This parasite lives in the heart and is passed from dog to dog by mosquitoes. Heartworm infections can be fatal. Your dog should have a blood test for heartworm every spring—this is crucial for detecting infections from the previous year. A once-a-month pill given during mosquito season will protect your dog. If you travel south with your pet during the winter, your dog should be on the preventive medicine during the trip. In some warmer regions, veterinarians recommend preventive heartworm medication throughout the year.

Dental Health  – While many of us may object to our pet’s bad breath, we should pay attention to what it may be telling us. Bad breath is most commonly an indication that your dog is in need of a dental check up. Dental plaque caused by bacteria results in a foul smell that requires professional treatment. After a professional cleaning, the teeth and gums may be maintained in a healthy state by brushing the teeth regularly, feeding a specially formulated dental diet and treats, and avoiding table scraps. Your veterinarian can give you more tips on minimizing dental disease and bad breath.

You can clean your canine’s teeth with a dog toothpaste or a baking-soda-and-water paste once or twice a week. Use a child’s soft toothbrush, a gauze pad or a piece of nylon pantyhose stretched over your finger.

Some dogs are prone to periodontal disease, a pocket of infection between the tooth and the gum. This painful condition can result in tooth loss and spread infection to the rest of the body. Veterinarians can clean the teeth as a regular part of your dog’s health program.

We provide exceptional care with lots of love for your four-legged family members. All of our services are personalized to meet your individual needs.

A properly groomed pet is a happy and healthy pet. Nobody understands that better than Pause 4 Paws Pet Grooming And Salon. Whether your dog is a pedigree or the neighborhood stray that you fell in love with, Pause 4 Paws Pet Grooming And
Salon offers a full-line of grooming procedures from a simple shampoo to pre-competition preparation.

Eddie is skilled in professional groom Full techniques for dogs and understands the particular grooming needs of differents breeds. Part of our grooming service is to check the condition of your pet’s skin, coat, eyes, ears and teeth, and we can alert you to symptoms of common medical problems so you can consult with your vet early on.  We also provide special treatments should your dog or cat have fleas or ticks. Regular grooming keeps your pet healthy and looking nice!

We offer the below services as a package or as a la carte:

  • HAIRCUT
  • SHAMPOO & CONDITIONER
  • TEETH BRUSHING
  • NAIL TRIMMIING EAR CLEANING
  • EXPRESS ANAL GLANDS

We also offer the below services as a la carte plus an additional charge:

  • NAIL POLISHING
  • HAIR DYING

Doggie-BrushMany people like to bathe their pets in between their grooming sessions. This is a wonderful way to keep your pet clean, but you must remember that there is a right way and a wrong way to bathe at home. Always remember to brush out your pet’s coat BEFORE you bathe him or her. Most people don’t realize that this is the number one reason your pet’s fur becomes matted. If there are any knots in his or her coat, the water will make them become tighter and tighter until your groomer has no choice but to shave the coat short. Brushing before the bath will prevent this situation.
Brush the coat out first with a brush and then go through it with a comb to make sure alldoggi the mats are out. Most times the matting will be close to the skin so you must make sure you are not just brushing the top coat. Be sure you do not brush super hard next to the skin so as not to give your pet a brush burn. After you are sure all of the matting is out, you can proceed to the bath. It is important to brush your pet after the coat has dried as well but this will be much easier since all of the knots were taken out prior to the bath!!
Do not attempt to cut any mats out at home with scissors. It is very, very easy to cut your pet’s skin and should be left alone until your groomer can shave it out.