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Q. Dog went out with kids to play in the snow (approx. 20 minutes). Paws and lower legs now red and bumpy. Is this frost bite? What do we do?

A. From what you reported, yes it could be frost bite. Warm the affected area rapidly with warm (NEVER HOT) water. The recommended water temperature is 104 -108° F. Use warm compresses or soak the affected area, e.g., foot, in a bowl of warm water. Do NOT use direct dry heat such as a heating pad or hair dryer.

After you have warmed the area, dry it gently and thoroughly.

Do not rub or massage the affected area.

Contact your veterinarian or emergency clinic and have your pet examined immediately. Keep your pet warm during the travel to the veterinarian. For instance, wrap your pet in a dry towel or blanket that has been cycled in a warm clothes dryer for several minutes.

Answered By
DR. MASSIMO ORIOLES, DVM, MRCVS

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A. It's very possible that it's frostbite or maybe just a reaction to the cold snow. Is he walking without showing signs of pain? if so he should be ok.

If he is showing signs of pain and discomfort try worming his legs and paws with an hairdryer - put the hairdryer on 1 and quiet far to avoid burning.

If it looks sore in an hour still put some gel or cream for moisturizing and elevating the inflammation (silver sulfadiazine cream is the best if you happen to have one).

Answered By
DAVID ELBEZE, DVM, MRCVS

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