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5 Ways to Make Snow Days the Best with Your Dog

Winter is here, and that means shorter days with less daylight, and, sometimes, lots of snow! Take advantage of what winter has to offer and make the most of this time with your dog. On those days when you're snowed in and a jaunt around the neighborhood is out of the question, you can still get the exercise and bonding time you need. Follow our tips, and no minute will go to waste! [caption id="attachment_1182" align="align-right" width="300" caption="Hazel didn't end up making the best sled dog."]Hazel as Sled Dog[/caption] 1. Teach your dog some new tricks. If you're snowed in and you can't get outside, take this time to teach your dog new tricks. As they say, you can teach a dog anything in just 10 minutes a day! Take the time to come up with a new plan to teach your furry friend something new. You could hide their favorite toy or treat, and teach them how to retrieve it. You would be amazed at how much exercise your pup can get running around the house looking for the prize. Up the ante by using a toy or treat with a specific smell, tuning into your dog's powerful hunting and tracking capabilities.   [caption id="attachment_1187" align="align-left" width="256" caption=""Is it sunny outside yet?""]Pups on treadmill[/caption] 2. Get fitness-forward with some treadmill time. You know you've always wanted to teach your dog to walk on the treadmill ever since you saw that episode of The Dog Whisperer. Now can be the perfect time! Any dog can be taught to walk    on a treadmill with a little time and patients, and this can become an activity you'll take advantage of all year long. Plus, it's a fun holiday party trick! 3. Get your dog in the holiday spirit with a dog sweater. [caption id="attachment_1183" align="align-right" width="225" caption="Hazel has the look that says, "I didn't pick this sweater.""]Dog in Christmas Sweater[/caption] Canine sweaters are popular and available just about everywhere you buy pet products. You can even make one yourself from that old sweater you wore to the "Ugly Christmas Sweater" party last year. Just search online for instructions on how to turn a human sweater into a dog sweater. Now you've upcycled, and saved some money, to boot! 4. Now that you're dog's all gussied up, have a photo shoot in the snow. Most dogs absolutely love to play in the snow. Capture your fun frolics with an impromptu photo shoot. You can even use new social media apps like Vine to make a video to share with friends. Now you have great photos you can use for Christmas cards. If your dog is a rescue, think about sending the photos to the rescue organization. They love seeing the dogs they've helped place in such a happy and festive atmosphere--your home!

[caption id="attachment_1184" align="align-left" width="300" caption="Linus says, "When's the last time this was washed?""]Chilly dog with toy[/caption]
5. Get a jump start on spring cleaning. If the weather is unrelenting and you're stuck inside for prolonged period of time, a great way to make use of the downtime is to scrub out all of your dog bowls and wash his toys and blankets and beds. It's probably something that's been sitting on your to do list for a long time. With a little bit of creative thinking, snow days with your dog can become some of the best days of the year! Remember to keep him safe and protect his feet from the snow and ice when you do venture outside. And when get some great holiday shots, we'd love to see them on our Facebook page!
Earth's Balance Living with Pets   dog apparel dog exercise dog sweaters Snow days winter safety

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