Nov 12

Ice Melt: keeping your pet from being a salty dog

It’s that time of year again. Winter brings beautiful snowy landscapes, but it also brings potentially dangerous condition. To keep our lives going we use modern conveniences, like ice melt, to combat things like snow and ice. But chemical-based ice melts can often be harmful to our four-legged friends. So let’s break down what store-bought ice melts are and how to keep your pet safe while still being able to use your sidewalk this winter.

Most commercial ice melt products are a combination of one or more of these: Sodium chloride (rock salt), Calcium chloride, Magnesium chloride, Potassium chloride. They typically work by absorbing moisture from the ice, that creates a liquid brine that exposes the chemicals to the ice and generates heat. This works great… to melt the ice, but as you can imagine this then leaves a dangerous sediment on the ground where we all walk.

In typical human fashion, we don’t really care about this. We wear shoes and thus it doesn’t affect us, therefore we don’t put much thought into it. But dogs and other animals don’t have this convenience, and yes there are dog booties and if you can keep your dog in them you’re a better magician than I am. So what can we do?

There are a few products that have put thought into keeping our pup’s paws safe and sound.
 Safe Paw is a non-toxic ice melt and readily available in stores or HERE on

Morton Safe-T-Pet is a salt-free ice melt developed with vets. Also in stores or HERE.

Winter is always a struggle if you live in the north, it’s easy to find yourself out of what you need and make a quick run to the nearest corner store for whatever they have left. So keep that in mind and stock up. These products don’t expire quickly so you can always use it next year (I’m pretty sure it’ll snow again… and again… and again).

+ Colin Carlton,
Ruffin’ Wranglers