Small Dogs Social Group To Run Through Winter

backyard coldest winter ontario dogs

Small Dogs Social Group

Last winter, my small dogs social Meetup group took the 3-4 months of the cold season off as a hiatus.  But now that we’ve grown  with my Lhasa Apso dogs Chester & Roxie making a lot of doggie friends this year, a few of our members have been discussing about the possibility of continuing with get-together events throughout this coming winter.

Seeing how happy our small dogs are whenever they are together at our outings, I think it would be a shame if they could not see each other for 3-4 months.  It’s just too long a period without seeing their friends.

There’s no doubt that once our small dogs become friends, they do remember each other right away even after an absence.  For example, when we ran our first outing this past spring after the long winter, Chester & Roxie welcomed their friend Emmy back at the dog park right away even though they haven’t seen each other for about 4 months.  This is a big deal especially for Chester since he has not been known to be too friendly to some dogs he has never met before but he was clearly happy seeing Emmy again.

So for this upcoming winter, we are going to try and run some outings at some of our favourite dog parks as well as trail locations since not all of our dog members are comfortable at dog parks because of bigger dogs there.  The only precaution we’ll have to take is scout out locations a few days before each event to check for access and road/trail salt conditions.   We want to minimize the exposure of road salt to our dogs since their paws get irritated with salt.

Winter Dog Walks

Since winter dog walks will be in cold temperatures, these outings will likely be shorter in duration and less frequent as we will not run any of our midweek walks during the winter due to lack of light and even colder temperatures at night.  But our small dogs group members feel that even if our dogs were to get together for say 20 to 30 minutes once per week or every other week, it’s better than having them to wait 3-4 months without seeing each other.

Our winter dog walks will therefore be during weekend daytime hours.  Chester and Roxie do not do a lot of winter dog walks during the week because of colder temperatures and road salt.  They actually do not have to go out at all since we also exercise indoors together running stairs and they are both fully potty trained to use an indoor dog litterbox.

We also go out in our backyard area a lot during the winter since it’s enclosed plus the big benefit is that there is no road salt in the back to irritate their paws.  Chester and Roxie use to play with their neighbourhood doggie friends out in the back all year round, even during the winter.  Here is our video showing this winter fun.

In fact, we are going to try and run a few small dogs social play sessions here in our backyard area for our dog group members this winter. One of our new neighbour doggie friends lives right next door so it will be really easy for him.

For our other members, they will just have to carry their small dogs from the visitors parking area to our home since the laneways here are heavily salted during the winter. But I think it would be worthwhile as a dog get together. It worked really well with our neighbourhood dog friends so Chester and Roxie’s other doggie friends from the small dogs social group should like it as well.

Although some of our dog members will not be coming out much during the winter, I’m sure that there will be a core group of regular dogs coming since their owners realize that we should do everything possible to give our pets the opportunities to see each other even during the colder months of the year.  Dog socialization is important for the well being of our pets.

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