Below freezing temperatures and snow this weekend -- a brief interlude from our otherwise unseasonably warm winter weather. As circumstances would have it, we were also dog sitting the rescued Peruvian Hairless puppy, Cheska, during the weekend's winter storm.
My understanding is that it gets quite cold in at least certain regions in Peru, but maybe the hairless dogs weather the inclement weather (pun intended) in a warm cave deep in the Andes. Cheska was NOT made for the snow. Even a full-body onesie + coat is not enough to stop her from shivering and protesting any outdoor activities. Ever watched a puppy stage a full-on poop strike? Poor Cheska.
Poor poor Cheska.
Just not their own boots. They do fine walking through snow, but if it's slush (or even better, special NYC sidewalk slush, which is mixed with salt and chemicals to become SUPER cold), the pups spend our "walk" hopping on three legs while trying to defrost a frozen paw in their mouth. And even after all the slush has melted, the lingering salt and de-icing chemicals on the sidewalk can irritate their paw pads and cause dryness and painful cracking. There are two products in my arsenal that help protect the bubs' paws in winter:
 Mushers Secret ($14 for 60 grams), which is a wax that forms a semi-permeable shield on the pups' paws to protect them from snow (including ice build-up between paws), salt, chemicals, grit, rough terrain, and other paw pad irritants. Apply once a week or more often. All three pups had their paws waxed this weekend.
 Pawz Natural Rubber Dog Boots ($14 for X-Small, i.e., Lu, $15 for Small, i.e., Betel), which are disposable (but reusable!), biodegradable waterproof dog boots. They're thick rubber balloons that slide right on the pups' feet. They come in seven sizes (from "Tiny" to "X-Large") and there are twelve boots to a package.
The dogs walk funny when you first put them on (videos of Betelgeuse from last winter in our old apartment below) but then they forget they're even wearing them. They don't need Pawz on every snowy or icy walk -- these boots are made for those terrible slushy days or if you're going to be out for a long time in the cold. As a bonus: these boots protect their paws from even coming into contact with salt, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea when licked. Yuck.
After our one frozen weekend, we're back to sunny skies and mild temps in New York. So I've stored these winter goods again. If you don't already own Mushers Secret wax or Pawz boots, you may want to hold off on buying -- they may be rendered obsolete by global warming.
I'm sure Lulu won't mind.