Its that time of the year when we start getting snow and should think about our dog and his or her winter needs. Most things are common sense.

1)  Some dogs love the snow and will stay out as long as you will let them no matter how cold it is.  The good rule of thumb is when you are outside with your dog if you are cold and ready to come inside chances are your dog is as well.

2)  Some dogs are blessed with thick coats for winter but that doesn't mean they are not capable of getting cold and may need a coat or at the very least shorter exposure to the cold

3)  Keep fresh water handy for your dog, this goes for summer and is just as important in winter. Do make sure your dog's outside water bowl is not frozen

4) Take the time after you and your dog come in from the snow to clean off their paws and between their toes. The show builds up and causes problems for your dog's feet.

5)  When the temperature drops bring your dog in even if you have an insulated dog house.

If your dog sleeps with you or on the floor beside your bed he will need a good warm bed, that keeps your dog warm on cold nights. Old wool blankets really work well for bedding.

For more tips and ideas check out Dogs naturally magazine