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Latest health and behavior news and advice from the veterinarians at Tufts University.

News & Views April 2015 Issue

For Those Slippery Floors, Non-Slip Socks

A more aesthetically pleasing solution than runners.

We have often said that some dog owners need to put aesthetics aside and lay runners across their slippery hardwood or tile floors because their pets are either afraid of them or truly cannot navigate them. Puppies in particular may fear slippery-looking floors. They may be like an ice skating rink for someone who has never had skating lessons and strike terror in some pets, who refuse to go out into the middle of the “ice.”

For older dogs with arthritis or mobility challenges like going from a lying to a standing position, certain types of flooring may truly be slippery. For them, too, traction should trump décor.

But Sue Harrison of Phoenix, Arizona, reminds us that you don’t have to compromise the look of your home to make your pet more comfortable about navigating rooms with smooth flooring.

“We changed our floor to a hard (contemporary concrete) style this past year, then realized one of the dogs was having a lot of trouble,” she writes. “I have used runners, but it’s difficult to cover all the spaces all the time. I eventually ‘Googled’ no-slip socks for dogs and found that there are numerous kinds. I selected a style that is silicone all the way around, so if the socks get turned, they still provide traction. Our Chow mix, Cookie (almost 16), is having great use of them….they are snug enough to stay on, but not too tight to cause any circulatory compromise. In fact, she can usually make do with just wearing the front two. The additional mobility and stability with the socks has made it possible for her to continue to get up and around on her own, be more active, use the doggie-door, and even play a bit with her favorite toy. The set of four was about $20, and we consider it to be a fabulous investment for that amount!”

Before Sue Harrison rescued Cookie, the dog lived in a tin shed in Phoenix's summer heat and was fed sporadically. Now she lives a good life, with socks that make it easier for her to navigate the smooth floors in her loving owner's home.

Thanks, Sue! We don’t know how we let that solution slip by us.

Happy tails to you,
Lawrence Lindner
Executive Editor

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