February 27, 2011 by The Dog Rules
De-icing salts cause irritation to the skin on a dog’s paw pads. Please remember to wipe your dog’s paws to prevent her from licking off any de-icing salts she may have stepped in.
If your dog licks its paws and ingests the salt it can experience gastrointestinal irritation, the symptoms of which include: vomiting, diarrhea and drooling. More serious side effects (depending on the amount ingested) include excessive thirst, depression, weakness in blood pressure and disorientation. The most intense symptoms after a high level of ingestion are a decrease in muscle function, seizures, comas and even death. If you suspect exposure to de-icing salts, call your veterinarian.
In winter, I always keep a small towel right beside the door for wiping Dog’s feet. Not only does this keep her safe, it also means she is not tracking stuff through the house. I wipe wet feet for the same reason. Another benefit of handling Dog’s feet frequently is that she is not at all concerned when it is time to clip nails.