For those of you who live in an area that endures cold weather, it is important to know how to winterize your Pomeranian.
For many of us, winter means cold temperatures, wet participation in the form of freezing rain and/or snow and drier air as well.
These elements can affect a Pom’s:
Rate of shedding
Ability to control body temperature
For these reasons, there will need to be a change in how you groom your Pom and some care elements in regard to feeding and exercise.
In the section, we are going to discuss:
How to winterize the coat, paws and nose of your Pomeranian
Steps to prevent drying of the skin (a common winter problem for this breed)
Taking your Pom out in the snow and cold
Changes to expect in regard to eating and exercise
Letting a Pom play in the snow
Steps to keep your Pomeranian happy in the winter, despite any nasty cold weather
Grooming and Protection of the Coat
Taking care of a Pomeranian in the winter time will focus quite a bit on proper care of both the skin and the coat.
The main reason for this is that whether or not it is snowing out, the air in the winter is much drier than in the spring, summer or autumn. When it is cold out, the air is not able to hold onto very much moisture.
And don’t think you’re safe by staying indoors. When that arid air meets the warm temperatures of a heated house, it dries out even more. For this reason, your Pomeranian simply will not be able to escape the damage that dry winter air can do to his coat and skin without some help from you.
2 main things can occur without proper winterization:
1) Skin can become dry and chapped. When this happens, hot spots (red, irritated skin), and itchiness will occur (sometimes severe). Once this happens, thinning of the coat is not far away.
2) The coat can become very static and this causes split ends. Split ends (if not trimmed back) will run up toward the root. Hairs will break off and the fur will thin out. Protecting a Pomeranian to avoid this is much better than trimming the coat after the damage has occurred.
Use a good product at the right times – While all owners should be using a quality leave-in conditioner, it is important in the winter more than ever. Spraying on a good amount will coat the hairs and create a shield that protects the fur from the harmful effects of a cold, dry winter season.
Remember that your house will hold less humidity than normal as well, so even if you take your Pom outside less during cold weather, this is still an important grooming step.
Here are the steps:
1) It is best to apply the leave-in product in the morning to start the day and then a lighter coat right before bedtime.
2) Start off with a coat that is free of dead hairs and mats. Therefore, go over all areas with a good slicker brush to pull out any shedding hairs and then give it a once over with a comb to ensure that there are no mats.
Note: Though the coat will have filled out more to prepare for the cold weather, there will always be dead hairs due to the life cycle of the follicles.
3) Once this is complete, it is time to apply the leave-in product. A small pin brush works best; you’ll want to choose one that is textured in the right way to distribute the product but not too rough as to irritate the skin.
Work in sections, spraying the leave-in conditioner near -but not on- the roots. As you go, stroke down to the ends.
Once you have gone over every area, spray some into your hands, rub them together and then scrunch into the ends of the coat to really coat the tips.
4) Don’t go overboard; too much will weigh the coat down, make the fur oily and block healthy air circulation to the skin pores. As you go, think ‘lightly mist’.
The application done in the evening will be a light touch-up for any that has rubbed off during the day. It will be to continue the protection of your Pomeranian sleep (fur rubbing against fabric during the winter can cause static).
Our Favorite Brushes, Comb & Coat Spritz
Be sure to keep up on your schedule of giving your Pom a bath every 3 weeks. Especially in the winter, you will want to stay right on track since your Pom’s skin will be very vulnerable to becoming dry.
The goal will be to use a moisturizing shampoo to clean off all residue – be sure to scrub down through the coat very well and rinse super well since any dry soap particles will be more irritating to a Pomeranian’s skin in the winter. This is followed by using a moisturizing conditioner to protect and soften.
These thorough baths will wash out all the built-up oils and products on the fur, leaving it ‘fresh’ to start over again until it is bath-time in another 3 weeks.
If your Pom has developed very dry winter skin that is itching, chapped, and/or irritated, you may want to opt for an intense oatmeal based shampoo specifically for dry skin.
With skin so prone to becoming dry in the winter, it is best to allow your Pomeranian to air dry and refrain from using a blow dryer. Use a soft, absorbent towel and scrunch the coat to absorb water, making sure not to rub.
Plan baths well in advance so that your Pom does not need to be taken outside with damp fur (this could prove dangerous in the winter).