Cold Weather Tips!

Welcome, winter! (Should I be saying bah humbug?)

Many people are aware of warm weather threats for their pet, but how often do you think about the cold weather? Cats and dogs are susceptible to cold temperatures similar to people including frostbite and hypothermia. Their tolerance depends on coat size, body condition, and health. Shorter coated breeds may enjoy having a dry sweater to help keep them insulated for short times outside. Animals that are thin may not have sufficient fat stores to combat the cold. Young, debilitated, or animals with chronic illnesses/diseases (cushing’s, diabetes, etc) may not fair as well outside. Consider keeping cats indoors most of the time, or offer a warm place with food and water (not frozen) where they can stay safe in the cold. Cars are a warm place to hide during the winter for many cats. Consider tapping on the hood, or honking your horn before starting your car to make sure any felines having a snooze up under your vehicle have vacated.
Be aware that damp clothing placed on your pet can actually make them more cold. If you take your pet for a walk on the roads, please consider giving them a warm bath at the end to clean off any de-icer, antifreeze, or other chemicals that may have been picked up from the road. Pay attention to your dog’s feet when you go on (short) walks, as sudden lameness could be from balls of snow and ice that have formed between the toes. Salt can also get stuck there and cause discomfort. If you have antifreeze on your property, make sure it is secured in a location not accessible to animals.

Let’s try to keep everyone safe this winter!