Many dogs love winter, however winter can sometimes be cruel to pets. It is important to rid your walkways and driveways of ice, but many of the products on the market can be harmful to our fuzzy friends.
The most common ingredient in ice melt is calcium chloride. Although this is the fastest way to melt ice, it is very harmful to pets. This chemical, and traditional rock salt, is often the blame for dried-out paws and painful irritations.
Pet stores and other retailers are often stocked with “Pet Safe” ice melt. The most common ingredient in a lot of these is Urea. Urea will not harm your pet but it unfortunately is not good for melting ice either. People tend to over-apply making this a very costly purchase, and they still end up with slippery walkways.
So-called pet safe ice melts that contains magnesium chloride is not safe at all. Studies have shown that this is not the best alternative for people with pets. The industry is not regulated and unfortunately, just because the container has a cute dog on it, it doesn’t mean it is safe for pets.
We recommend a product called “Safe Pet” by Quik Joe. The main ingredient in this product is propylene glycol. Coincidentally, this chemical is also commonly used in the production of personal health care products, veterinary medicine, and food.
This product is very safe for pets, as it does not cause burns or irritations to humans or animals. This ice melt can cut through ice that is 1 inch thick quickly. It also roughens the surface so if there are solid layers that it cannot cut through, it will still make a safer walkway by providing a gritty surface while preventing new ice from bonding. Another great feature of this product is there is no left over messy residue like other products leave.
To keep your pets safe this winter, here are a few tips:
- Use a non-toxic pet friendly ice melt like Quik Joe “Safe Pet” Ice Melter.
- Clean your dog’s paws after they come in contact with any walkways with ice melt. You have no way of knowing if they are using pet friendly ice melt or not.
- Protect your dog’s paws on walks with booties. A cheaper and easier alternative is an old pair of human socks fastened with a piece of velcro or tape.
- On extremely cold days your dog would probably love a warm jacket or sweater for some added warmth. (Hats are optional)