We all know that we need rock salt in order to keep our driveways and sidewalks safe and cleared of ice and snow, but did you know that ice melting materials could actually cause discomfort and health complications for your four-legged friends?
As a pet owner, the last thing you want is to cause harm to your furry family members as the result of spreading rock salt throughout your property.
It’s because of this that animal- conscientious homeowners choose to select trustworthy, pet friendly rock salt to get them through the winter season.
Before picking up just any product, though, it’s important to learn more about what you should expect. Here are 6 general rules for selecting pet friendly rock salt:
1. It Should Be Visible
One of the first thing that you should look for in a pet friendly rock salt product is a material that is easy to see as it is spread, and as it lays on your property’s surfaces. The best types of rock salt will have colored or tinted crystals. The benefit here is twofold.
First, you’ll find that it’s a lot easier to spread the material evenly for maximum melting efficiency. Second, it’s simple for you to keep an eye on the areas where your pets are walking and direct them away from the ice melt so that they don’t eat snow in these spots.
2. It Should Be Less Toxic
A top concern for homeowners with cats and dogs is that their pets could become very ill should they lick snow or ice in areas where rock salt has been applied. This poisoning could lead to upset tummies and sickness.
A good pet friendly ice melting product will be specifically formulated to be less toxic, so that pets will not become dangerously ill in the event that they do accidentally ingest the material.
3. It Should Be Safe for Paws
Another major priority for pet owners is the safety of their furry friends’ paws after they have walked over the surface of areas with rock salt. The crystals from ice melt have a tendency to get stuck in the padding of a dog or cat’s paws.
With some types of ice melt, this can create chemical burning and irritation, which causes a lot of stress and discomfort for the animal. Pet friendly rock salts are designed to not create these problems or hazards.
4. It Should Be Easy to Use
The last thing you want is for your rock salt to create challenges for you throughout the application process. A good pet friendly rock salt will be simple and easy to apply. Manufacturer instructions should be clear on how much material to use, and you should have the ability to keep an eye on how much product you’ve used.
5. It Should Be Specifically Designed for Use With Pets
You may find that some retailers, family members or friends will tell you that “Product X” is perfectly safe to use around pets. While their advice may be harmless, the last thing you want is to select a product that isn’t actually designed for use around animals. Unless the product is specifically labeled as being pet friendly, steer clear and look for something else.
6. It Should Be Fast-Acting and Effective
Just because your rock salt is safe to use around pets doesn’t mean that you should sacrifice the melting power, efficiency or effectiveness of the product. The best material will be formulated not only for pet safety, but also to quickly create a brine with snow or ice and lower the melting temperature of water to melt existing ice and prevent future formations – even in the coldest of temperatures.
Tips for Using Pet Friendly Rock Salt
Now that you’re aware of what you should expect from your pet friendly rock salt, there are a few other things that you should know about working with this type of material. The following tips will answer any other questions you may have about choosing and using pet friendly rock salt:
Calculating Your Need
Knowing what type of rock salt to buy is only half the battle! Now you need to know how much to purchase – and stock up in advance. Waiting to purchase pet friendly rock salt on an as-needed basis or as the inclement winter weather rolls in is a mistake.
As the season progresses, you’ll find that stores become more likely to run out of pet friendly ice melting materials and that prices go up on the remaining inventory. Calculating how much to buy in advance is the way to go. Although you should always check the manufacturer’s instructions before calculating, the following formula is a good base guideline.
First, measure the square footage (length x width) of your driveway or sidewalk. This number should be multiplied by 3.1, which is the average number of pounds of rock salt that should be applied per square foot.
Take the amount of pounds that should be applied to your driveway and divide it by 50 to figure out how many bags of rock salt will be required for each winter storm. Ask your supplier if you’d be better served to buy by the bag or to purchase in bulk.
Choosing a Brand
When selecting a brand of pet friendly rock, it’s important to select a product that you know you can trust. This means looking for an established brand that is known for producing high-quality ice melt at an affordable price.
At Braen Supply, we tend to recommend Safer-Than-Salt Breeder’s Preferred. Manufactured by the Kissner Group, which is one of the most trusted names in ice melt. You can count on the fact that the material will act as efficiently, effectively and safely as promised.
Choosing a Supplier
Never overlook the importance of choosing the right supplier for your pet friendly rock salt needs. There are many different stores that sell ice melting products throughout the holiday season, but not all of them will carry materials that are designed to be safe for your pets.
While sales representatives may claim that certain products may be harmless for pets, they may be unfamiliar with the material or simply trying to make a sale. Avoid buying from stores where a rep directs you to a product that isn’t marked as being safe for pets.
You should stay away from large retailers that may inflate their prices throughout the winter season. Lastly, it’s a good idea to stay local with your purchases as this will keep your costs as low and reasonable as possible.
Ready to Purchase Pet Friendly Rock Salt?
If you’re ready to purchase pet friendly rock salt, Braen Supply is the place to go. We carry Safer-Than-Salt Breeder’s Preferred – the most trusted name in pet friendly ice melting materials.
Our professional staff are happy to work with you to calculate how much rock salt to purchase or to address any of your questions or concerns. We offer competitive pricing on our pet friendly products.
You can purchase your rock salt by the bag, pallet, or truckload. Bulk deliveries can be made to areas throughout NJ, NY, PA and CT. Call us today to learn more!