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Absolutely yes, there is no reason at all why you should not. You can take your Lhasa Apso on a winter holiday, just follow the advice below so your pet has as much fun as you
- Why take your Lhasa Apso on a winter holiday?
- What are high altitude problems for dogs?
- What effect do the sub-zero temperatures have?
- How to control the ice build-up on dogs paws
- Feeding and the correct hydration for your Lhasa Apso
- My tips for a cool holiday together
Why take your Lhasa Apso on a winter holiday?
Well, I would ask you this question, why not take your Lhasa Apso? your dog is now part of your family and he deserves to spend fun time with you. If it is the first time for your pet to venture in the snow it is comical to watch their first encounter with the white fluffy powder snow, have your camera on hand to record that first moment. Lucky has been on a few skiing holidays with us and he really enjoys it. You’re going to take your Lhasa Apso walking, playing, digging in the snow, I assure you will both have a fun time. The fresh mountain air will be beneficial, and maybe more exercise than normal.
Now there are certain things that you need to be aware of before venturing into the cold snowy mountains. Your animal may suffer from these, the altitude, cold, ice, dehydration. Just as some adults suffer so our pets can suffer too. I remember when our son Alex was eighteen months old we took him to a ski station that was at two thousand meters, at that time I did not know what adverse effects this would have on him during the whole weeks holiday, we drove up without stopping to acclimatize at different altitude levels, this was our biggest mistake. Alex cried the whole week, it was too much for his young body system to handle.
What are the high altitude problems for dogs?
Learning from our mistake with our son, we now take more time when driving up to a high altitude station, taking two or even three rest breaks for around an hour, this procedure will help acclimatize your pet for the final ascension, it is a good way to reduce any problems by trying to get up too quickly, of course, we are excited to get there early, but add this extra time into your journey planning. Once in your hotel, or chalet keep a watchful eye on your pet to see if there are any signs of the high altitude sicknesses, these can vary but some common signs can be your pet being unusually sick, an abnormal thirst, if it seems to be lost in its thoughts, being light-headed, or some other strange behaviour, if you notice any of this call the local vet so he can check out your dog and prescribe the necessary treatments.
What is this fluffy white stuff!
What effect do sub-zero temperatures have?
What do you do if the temperatures are dropping constantly under zero? Like me you get yourself wrapped up in some warm clothing to keep that bitter cold off your body. So you must keep you Lhasa Apso warm with winter clothing, do not forget most of their lives are spent indoors with central heating, they do not have the habit of such cold conditions. Remember that you are feeding your Lhasa Apso correctly to live a long healthy life and in such, they do not have surplus fat like mountain dogs or wolves, you need to compensate this lack of fat by letting them wear some additional clothing. A good example is the body jackets that can be found in your Amazon store. Not only that but continue to survey them for signs of frostbite, our Lhasa Apso’s are short in the leg department so their little bodies are much closer to the snow and therefore prone to get colder quicker. Be aware if you are in an area where cars can park, if you see some blue liquid on the ground do not let your pet near, it could be antifreeze from a leaking car or truck radiator, which, if they walk in this and later lick their paws could make them sick, a good idea to stop this problem is to let them wear snow boots. I said in a previous post do not feed your dog salty titbits!! That is the reason. Another point to watch out for is that you must increase their fat intake with these sorts of reliable foods to keep them on form as they will burn more fat in these cold conditions as they run around and play in the snow.
How to control the ice build-up on dogs paws
Do make sure that you have checked your Lhasa Apso’s paws well before the holidays for cracks or sores that they may have, if you treat them with a cream, like a petroleum jelly, they should be fine, normally your pet’s paws will have a hard feel to them if they are walking a lot outside, this is natural and gives them hardy little pads, a good tip is to cut the excess hair out from under their paws, this will help to keep the accumulation of snow to a minimum. On the other hand, (or paw) if your Lhasa is confined indoors and does not exercise much outside then their pads could be too soft, which is not going to help them on their holiday.
You need to be prepared for this and I suggest you purchase some little winter boots like these that were on Amazon, to let them wear whenever they venture outside in the snow. Do not be caught out when you arrive at your ski station trying to get them onto your pet’s paws. You will have tried them on at home beforehand I hope, to let your doggy get the feel of them on their paws, thus once on holiday they will except them no problem.
Check out this video of me putting Lucky’s snowboots on, here on his Youtube Channel My Lhasa Apso. Apart from their paws becoming caked in snow do be careful as our Lhasa Apso’s do have such long beautiful hair and this will become a block of ice in only a few minutes, what is the solution here? Well, you are going to have to put on the booties and a full jacket that will cover them completely. For sure there are going to be areas not covered but this you can take care of once home in the warm, by gently brushing out the excess snow and ice in front of a log fire.
Feeding the correct diet and hydration for your Lhasa Apso
Now we humanoids do burn off lots of calories in the mountains and so will your pet as they scramble around having fun, they are going to need extra energy, this comes from slightly changing their diet to add a little extra fat, and reducing the carbohydrates a little, remember also they will be more thirsty, keep an eye on their water bowl, make sure its fresh twice a day. I would leave their food and water accessible for them to eat as they feel need to. Be careful not to give your Lhasa the rest of your diners, the cheese and bacon on some of those mountain dishes are wonderful for us but terrible for your pet.
My tips for a cool holiday together
So yes do take your Lhasa Apso with you on a winter holiday, you will both benefit from the time together in new surroundings. Check beforehand if your hotel or lodge accepts dogs, there is nothing worse than arriving at your destination to be told sorry no pets allowed. Prepare all that will be needed to make your dog’s holiday comfortable, take some of his favorite toys, take as well his bedding so he can smell his own odor. Have their collar with your contact number on so if they do get lost you can be reached quickly, good idea is to have some towels to dry them after a day in the snow.
Most countries now fine you if you do not collect your pet’s poo! Have poo bags with you all the time, another good idea would be to have some type of stain remover just in case there is a little accident in the room. If you are using your car to travel around then an old cover for the trunk helps keep the car clean, if your Lhasa Apso is taking any form of medicine to be sure you pack this into your bags. Our Lucky is microchipped, that means he has his identification under his skin, in the event he gets lost we can be contacted quickly, many countries now have this law, so if you are planning to visit a new country find out what their laws are on dogs so not to be stopped at the border and you have to turn back!
Have a great holiday with your four-legged friend, if you follow these simple tips I’m sure that nothing can go wrong, my Lucky is living proof that a holiday in the winter is possible, with a little forward planning before you leave, it will lessen the stress for you and your pet will sense this and enjoy his holiday as well.
When you go on your winter holiday with your Lhasa Apso think about snow boots for them to help protect their paws, you can read about snow boots on my post here