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Dog Friendly Tips: Chewing Everything?

Your dog may be chewing because he's an exploring puppy, he's not trained, his breed is known for chewing, or because he has nervous energy.

Most canine behavioral experts recommend giving your dog plenty of dog toys to chew on and plenty of exercise to use up any nervous energy.

Remove items that your dog begins to chew on and replace it with a toy. If your dog is destructive when you are not home, he may be feeling separation anxiety.

Dog Friendly Article: 5 Tips to Safety and Fun Outdoors With Your Dog

If you're a dog lover, and I assume you are as you have chosen to read this article, the thought of leaving your "child" home alone, as your head outdoors to explore, is painful.

The image of their head hung low as sadness fills their eyes or worse yet their nose pressed against a window or door, watching you pull out of the driveway, should be enough to melt any adventurer's heart in the coldest of winters.

So as you make your plans, choose your destination and check your equipment for the next outdoor adventure, don't let the cold weather and snow keep you from bringing along your best friend.

Winter or summer, dogs can be a great addition to either a solo trek or a group outing. No matter what the activity, your dog just wants to be with you. It is your responsibility though to make sure it is not just fun, but safe as well.

Tip #1: Know your Dog...

While every dog will want to head out that door with you, not knowing where you are headed, you need to understand your dog to know whether they will have fun and be safe.

Different breed's bodies are regulated for different temperatures. In fact, we need to have the fireplace on and the dog door open for access to snow, all at the same time, due to different four-legged family members needs.

All dogs will enjoy being outdoors, even in the snow for some amount of time, but once you decide what activity you are doing, what the weather is and how long you plan to stay out, then you must decide if it will be fun, comfortable and safe for your dog.

Another thing to take into consideration, is your dog's conditioning. If your dog has gotten sedentary during the first part of winter, make sure to start with some lighter activities and or shorter hikes.

Tip #2: Dress for Success...

After putting on your coat, gloves and boots don't forget to consider the same for your dog. If your dog loves to be outside, but has shorter fur and gets a little cold, try a fleece coat. Additionally while dog paws are travel worn and accustomed to many surfaces throughout the year, snow and ice can get jammed in their paw and cause pain, so look in to booties.

Be prepared for your dog to not immediately love wearing either the coat or the boots. They will wrestle with both, if they have never worn them before. It will take some time to get used to them, but eventually they will love you for it.

If you are headed out at night, you will also want to consider some form of lighted collar or tag to keep track of your dog. The moonlight's reflection off the snow can provide a good deal of visibility at times, but it can disappear if you or the dog are in the trees.

Tip #3 Keep those Energy Levels Up...

While every activity starts off with a great deal of excitement and energy, it can quickly dwindle. A dog's body, just like ours, uses a lot of energy to keep warm. Add to this the exertion of the activity and your companion would sure appreciate you packing some snacks and water.

Don't be fooled as you watch your dog eat snow. While snow obviously hydrates, the melted water that comes from a mouthful of snow is much less then it appears. Your dog will still need the water that you hopefully packed.

One convenient option for carrying all of this is to use a doggie pack. The pack shouldn't exceed 25% of the dog's body weight and should be evenly packed on both sides of the body.

Tip #4: Use Added Caution All Around...

Once you get out there, you will naturally want to allow your dog to roam free. This may be OK, as only you know your dog's ability to stay close, not wander and listen to commands.

Some things to think about before you make that decision, even if "fido" is great off lea
d in the summer, are that the cold and snow can lessen a dogs ability to find a smell and thus increase their chance to get lost if they wander off. Additionally, it is hard to always know what is under the snow, and if you are in an area where there is a risk of frozen ice, you don't want your companion out on less then safe ice.

Tip #5: Pack it Out

Lastly, remember that even in the winter, you need to pack out everything that came in with you and or left during a bathroom break by "fido". So pack plenty of plastic bags in that doggie pack and do what's right for all the outdoorsmen to follow, whether they be two or four legged.

No matter what you choose to do this winter, there is always an opportunity to bring along you best friend. Follow the 5 tips above to make sure it is a great outing for all.

As the community manager for, a community for active outdoor individuals to find and share everything they need to explore the outdoors, we ask that you link back to or reference our site

At Exvana our users have a place to read about what others are doing, get ideas on what to do themselves, find the best place to get the toys and gear necessary to do it, and connect with other outdoor enthusiasts just like them.

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