This past week it has been colder than it has been in a long time in the Chicago area. Last night it was -7°. It’s been years since we had an extended period with low temperatures below zero.
Buffy, my cocker spaniel, does not like the cold or the snow. I usually put a coat on her if the temperature drops to 20° and add a sweater when it’s below 15°. I had tried booties once and she hated them, refusing to move. She usually tolerated our fifteen minute walk around the block without booties, except for those few houses that salted their driveways. Then she’d pick up her paws and refuse to walk.
I wasn’t usually one to put booties on my dogs in the winter, mostly because they didn’t stay on very well, or they collected snow at the top, which irritated my dog. Over the past twenty-five years of having dogs, I hadn’t found booties that I really liked—and I have tried many since I used to take my springer spaniels cross-country skiing.
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What worked the best was wax that I put on their paws just before we went outside. Musher’s Secret solved the
problem of losing booties on the trail and the build-up of ice balls between their toes. If that happened, I just applied more wax. But it was messy. I always had to apply the wax right next to the door or in the car since the wax would get all over the floor. If I let the dog outside first, then it was harder, and colder, to get good coverage through snowy pads.
I had heard of PawZ disposable/reusable booties but had not tried them before this year—and I LOVE them. They stay on and Buffy tolerates them. They are a little tricky to get on since they are made of rubber and it’s like putting on a balloon, but you can work out a technique or watch some of the you tube videos. I even found that they sell an instrument to stretch the booties for you—called Paws Jaws. I haven’t tried that yet, since I’ve figured out a pretty easy way to get the booties on by having Buffy lay down.
Although the package says disposable – reusable, I have used mine for weeks, but only for walks around the block. I haven’t had any holes yet through the rubber booties. I always got holes in the fleece booties and had to spend a lot of time mending them.
With only one dog, this pack of 12 booties will last me awhile. I might buy a smaller size for the back paws since Buffy’s back paws are much smaller, but that’s the only drawback!
What have been your experiences with dog booties? Please leave a comment and subscribe to my posts by leaving your email address in the box on the top right column.