Keep Paws Healthy and Avoid Ice Melt Toxins

Winter walks pose extra challenges for dogs and the people who walk them, alike. You bundled up and faced the frigid temperatures, all out of love for your furry companion.

You get back to your place and you’re both happy to be in warmth again, but it’s really important you give your dog’s paws some attention, especially if there’s been recent snowfall or ice.

Over the past few years the ASPCA has issued repeated toxicity alters about ice melting compounds, commonly sprinkled about by private households and city trucks. The most common toxin, in ice melting products, is Sodium Chloride. Other compounds that may also contain small amounts of the following toxins are: calcium chloride, potassium chloride or magnesium chloride.

Dogs that ingest ice melt products can easily get sick. Granted, your dog would need to eat a lot of ice melt before they become seriously ill, but even small amounts, your dog may consume, from licking coated paws, may cause discomfort. The effects of ingesting smaller quantities can include diarrhea, vomiting, disorientation, salivation, or excessive thirst, none of which are too pleasant for your furry friend!

Check for toxic ingredients and try to select a non-toxic alternative. Just to be safe, especially around your house where your dog will walk most frequently. Ecotraction is a non-toxic alterative made from volcanic minerals, but shop around and find one that works best for you.

Remember the following steps to prevent your dog from ingesting ice melt:

  • Wipe down or rinse paws after you’ve been for a walk, and your dog’s coat too if they’ve been rolling in the snow!
  • Try to stop your dog from eating snow, particularly in high trafficked areas where ice melt is likely to have been used
  • Don’t let your dog drink from puddles, this is the desired result of ice melt…puddles! Instead, carry a small bottle of fresh water if you think your dog will be thirsty.