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It's snowing like mad here - 30 cm (1 ft) forecast within 24 hrs, and strong winds whipping it around in the air. Which is honestly fairly normal for this area. Along with freezing rain, sleet, and other yucky wintery stuff that comes from living near a Great Lake.

I'm wondering how you deal with snow when you have a fluffy poodle? Previous dogs have either hated the stuff, or had fur that snow didn't cling to.

Annie LOVES the snow. She was a December born baby, so is thrilled to see it return. I got her in March, so never really dealt with more than a few cm of snowfall, and, as a puppy, she didn't go out for half hour walks. She is not going to be one of those dogs who refuses a walk because of the weather! We just came in from a long walk in the fluffy stuff and she is soaked. Snowballs around her feet, wet topknot, soaked back, etc. She looked like a frosted black poodle with a fully white muzzle. She had a blast - and carried the fun snow in with her to melt on my floor.

How do you dress your poodles for walking in a snow storm or freezing rain? Is there a way to keep her topknot dry? Do you use boots? I am worried about rock salt. Do your poodles wear a coat?

She's been slowly going into coat change for the last 3 months, and it's gotten quite bad on her sides/legs so any additional brushing because she's gotten wet is not something I am excited about!

No pictures from today, but here's her as a baby, loving the white stuff...
 

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Ours come in with snow and ice balls on their feet too, but they too love the snow and race around out on our property several times a day. I just let them in when they stop wrestling and let them dry off on a blanket, pulling off the snowballs from their belly, feet and legs so they dry faster. Some people who walk their dogs on sidewalks like muttluks to avoid salt or chemical deicers.

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There's a lot of personal preferences involved in these questions.

I personally use a light down puffer for my boys, more to keep their backs and necks dry than for warmth.

Puffer coats.jpg

The general consensus is that the spoos don't usually need to wear coats but that's a lot of hair to get snow packed. A solution for that is a snowsuit, some even use onesie jammies. They'll still get damp in those, but damp is easier to deal with than snowballs, I think.

Helios Thunder Crackle snowsuit.jpg

Older poos and smaller poos will likely feel the cold more, so a coat may be good idea for them.

Boots...well they're worth the price of admission just to watch the poos try to walk in them lol. Practically speaking, if you're going to be walking on salted or chemically treated surfaces, definitely worth trying.

I've seen strap on caps which might help with the topknot. Ice balls in the legs would require a snow suit or pants long enough, or longer boots. I tried doggie leggings and they kind of worked.

Hat and Warmers.jpg

Muttluks Fleece.jpg

Doggie leg warmers.jpg
 

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Many years ago we had a tpoo who loved to play in the snow with my kids. I made a snowsuit for her out of an old baby sleeper. The arms and legs were long enough to reach her paws and I left an opening so she could potty. Because her legs were covered, no snowballs formed in her fur.

I’ve been looking for something similar for my minipoo but haven’t found anything that is long enough to cover her pompoms. I use a comb to comb out the snowballs and we shovel an area of the yard for potty breaks.

I also tried several boots on my dog but she hated them and some didn’t fit well and fell off while she walked. In theory some boots may cover part of the leg avoid snow balls in the fur.
 

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If it is below 32 degrees out and Poppy will be outside for longer than a quick potty break I put a coat on her. If it is snowing heavily I put a coat on her just so she isn't soaked to the skin. Her coat is usually very short so she could easily get very cold if wet. Because I sew, I am thinking of making some spandex leggings to prevent leg snowballs. For my last three girls over the last 26 yrs I just pop them in the tub and give a quick rinse of warm water to get rid of snowballs in the fur and salt on the feet. It is quicker and tidier than trying to comb it out. Poppy just comes in the door and runs to the tub.Iris did the same. She does play in the snow every day and tracks the bunnies too but at my age, because I worry about falling on slipery sidewalks I no longer do neighborhood walks when the sidewalks are snowy or icy. She does go to a lot of stores with me so we always wash footies off because of salt and icky stuff in parking lots and on store sidewalks. I am considering boots but for now we just do foot washes. She likes the foot baths!
 

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I rescued Tonka when he was five. The first time we walked in a snow storm he came back inside the door and stopped dead in his tracks. It turns out that he was used to being toweled off before he entered the rest of the house.

We don't ever walk in salt, but when it gets below about -15C, I started to notice him limping from cold. So now he wears boots at that temperature... whether he likes it or not. ;)
 

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Zoe adores snow. She and Opal, the Lab, have wild snow games - I've even had Zoe jump into a drift that was over her head - she just "swam" out. When she comes in, I rub her down with a towel. Now that she is no longer in show coat I may have to get her a snowsuit!
 

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oversizedChihuahua.JPG

I shovel snow like I always did when I lived in Idaho. (above) Only here in Wa it doesn't snow too much or at all except last year...that was a rare one.

maurice in playing in the snow 2019 Feb.jpg

Dang, that picture went sideways. But it's Maurice running down the middle of the road in front of my house. No cars. (don't worry) He was having a wee of a time. I don't worry about salt because even if there is some, which there wasn't I don't think here, they just need to walk on my driveway or yard and it gets wiped off and diluted. I never did worry about that stuff when I lived in Idaho where they for sure put magnesium chloride (I think?) on the roads. It just came off when we got back to my driveway. Never a problem from that. Ice balls come off when they lie by the fireplace. Booties, they'd just rip off. Hats? No. Their top knots ARE their hats I figure. It doesn't matter if they get a little wet or snowy. It all dries again. They do like the snow.

They have little ski parkas that they wear if it's extra chilly...like below about 25depending on the dampness. Here, it feels colder than it did in Idaho when the temperature is significantly warmer because it's such wet snow usually and just more humidity. There, I had Chihuahuas, a Dobe and a Lab and we all walked until it got below about 15 degrees. They went out to pee even if it was 30 below zero. (which it only did a couple of times for a week or so) Boy, they did their business quickly. And right back inside.

So, I'd say, keep them from being too cold/shivering. And rinse off their feet either by trudging through fresh snow that doesn't have salt in it afterwards or rinse off in the tub/sink. They do have hair on their ears and frost bite doesn't happen much to dogs' feet. So I think as long as you're not out there for a very long time, and the dogs look comfortable, it should be fine with just a coat, if needed.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ok .... Those doggy leggings,jammies, and hats are hilarious! I am now very tempted.... It's a pity I never learned to knit. Annie will tolerate me putting anything on her so long as she gets a walk out of it.

We went for a 20 Min walk this morning and her ears were cold to the touch, and she was definitely on the edge of cold (-5C, sunny, but with a wicked wind). I live on the edge of a river gorge,so the wind is often nasty.

I am thinking of making/picking up a snood. I guess I should keep an eye out for a coat and boots as well... most of the stuff in the store looks more cute than functional.

I love the snow and the cold and am happiest at -15C - I fully expect to keep walking down to at least -30, it's just a matter of figuring out how to keep Annie warm.

Where I live now they like to put these huge chunks of rock salt that look like small gravel down.my mom has little rubber booties she puts on her Yorkie, as if they get stuck in her paw it hurts- I don't know if my spoo will have the same issue. The rubber balloon booties actually stay on which is lovely. The Yorkie has an extensive coat and sweater wardrobe, but I wasn't sure if my spoo would need them as well, as previous large dogs were impervious to cold. .
 

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Well, no doubt it's colder and harsher than any place I've lived as an adult. (I notice you're in Ontario) Brrrrr.:smow:Anyhow, I think with the kind of rock salt you describe, I'd be thinking about putting something on my dogs' feet. And that wind! Yikes! Well actually, where I live has some serious wind at times too but over all, the temps are pretty mild. I use to have a snood for my Doberman because his cropped ears had little hair inside of them. He looked so cute in it. So that's a good idea...a snood for your poodle. You'll have to post pictures when you get your precious all decked out. :angel:
 

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Milo totally adores snow. We are currently on a mini vacation and took milo with us. The fall picture was taken just yesterday and today, 10cm of snow fell in the city. I didnt pack his snow suit so he got a fair bit of snow balls but thankfully nothing he cant manage. I usually let him off leash back home but this park was close to a road and had rules about dog being on leash but he still had tons of fun!
 

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I also enjoyed the pictures of hats, leggings and snowsuits. I can’t imagine wrangling Buck into a snowsuit, four booties either. Thank goodness it’s not an issue here. Stay warm everyone!
 

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Our dogs love the snow, too. When Jazz was young and very slender, I sometimes put a fleece jacket on her in very cold weather and used foot covers--very light booties--to keep ice balls out of her bracelets when it snowed. She didn't seem bothered (never mind that she looks fairly mortified in the photo), but Blue hated them, so he went barefoot. Now that we live in a community that uses a lot of de-icer, I wipe their feet with a wet cloth after a walk, because Blue, especially, licks his paws.
 

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Things I'd forgotten about til my memory was jogged reading thru this thread

Mushers Secret will help protect the feet from

"Salt Residue and Ice Melt
Ice build-up
Snowballing
Sand and sandburn
Hot pavement
Rough terrain
Chemicals such as pesticides, lawn fertilizers etc"

according to their website. It's available many places but here's the website link Home - Musher's Secret

There's other brands of course, but this brand isn't terribly expensive.

An option to sink/tub rinse offs is a foot bath. I'd seen a contraption like this on the Petco website

Doggie Foot Bath.jpg

and realized that I had a wide mouth plastic container and washcloth on hand (I use a tall plastic cup lol). For smaller dogs or snow/ice/dirt low on a standard's legs, this might help.

I've seen folks mention some success with the Pawz rubber dog boots and I think the Muttluks brand has some fans.

I'm guessing to be successfully worn, the boots need to be pretty flexible so they can move fairly normally, in spite of not feeling the ground as usual, and a cinch or wrap closure on the top to keep the boots on.

Ok, just found these. I just don't know...reviews on Amazon seem generally positive, fwtw.

Walkee Paws.jpg

I also keep a small travel hair dryer in a cabinet near the back door but toweling off seems to be just as fast :).
 

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I like those Walkie Paws. They seem like they would be beneficial in reducing burrs and ticks on feet (no solution for face ticks since hockey masks are out).

We have reason to use boots from time to time- what a pain! The moccasins that search/rescue dogs use seem like the best, but are too expensive for our infrequent use.

I also had no idea dog leg warmers exist. The things I learn here!
 

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Lewis LOVES the snow. It's harder to get him to come inside in winter than in summer. And he was born in June in North Carolina. I just keep his coat a little longer and keep the thermostat at 67-68.
 

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My husband snow blows a winding trail through the back yard. It gives the dogs some exercise and makes poop-scooping much easier (poop on the trail or stick my muckett in a snowbank: hmmm.....)
 

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Many years ago we had a tpoo who loved to play in the snow with my kids. I made a snowsuit for her out of an old baby sleeper. The arms and legs were long enough to reach her paws and I left an opening so she could potty. Because her legs were covered, no snowballs formed in her fur.

I’ve been looking for something similar for my minipoo but haven’t found anything that is long enough to cover her pompoms. I use a comb to comb out the snowballs and we shovel an area of the yard for potty breaks.

I also tried several boots on my dog but she hated them and some didn’t fit well and fell off while she walked. In theory some boots may cover part of the leg avoid snow balls in the fur.
Skylar, on Etsy there are some shops that have dog pajamas. I have some for Zeke ( i don't deal with snow, though), and they go all the way down to his feet. If you send a note with an order with his measurements, they'll make it custom for you. That's what I did. If I can find the one I'm thinking of, I'll post the link.
 
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