Dogs have foot pads that are resilient to cold and hot temperatures. However, dogs from cold climates can often benefit from wearing boots. Boots will keep the paws warm and protect them from salt and ice, which can cut and scrape sensitive pads. This project takes little time and can be made with objects from around the house, creating boots that are cost-effective, warm and water resistant.
How to Make Boots for a Dog
Chose the proper size socks. You need four socks that will cover most of the dog's leg, providing warmth and protection from the elements, and four smaller socks that fit halfway up the leg. The socks need to be snug because if they slip and cause problems for the dog's natural movements, the dog will experience distress. A thrift store is a good place to find socks for this project.
Put the four longer socks on the dog. Make sure they fit snugly and do not slide around on the foot as the dog walks. The taller sock prevents snow from matting and sticking to longer fur. It also provides additional warmth and protection from wind and snow drifts.
Place one of the dog's paws into a plastic bag. A stretched-out balloon can also be used, if you have a small dog. The plastic or rubber creates a barrier against moisture, keeping the dog's feet dry. Place the small sock on top to hold the plastic in place. This outer sock also needs to be secure so that it does not slide around on the foot.
Allow your dog to adjust. Boots are foreign to dogs, so many dogs will dance around in confusion the first time wearing them. If possible, allow your dog to adjust with a few wearings before asking him to do demanding activities, like snow hiking or climbing.