We seem to have made it through most of this winter with relatively little snow and cold temperatures, however, January is now upon us and there are still a number of cold days ahead. Here are a few cold weather tips to help your pet ‘weather’ the remainder of the winter months.
- Keep them warm. If it is too cold for you to stay outside, then it is too cold for your pet to do the same. Please watch the thermometer and bring them in out of the cold when the temperature drops.
- Do not leave them in a car. We are all aware of the dangers of leaving our pet in a vehicle during the summer months, but a car in the winter months can be just a dangerous. If the temperature plummets a car can maintain the cold and be just like a refrigerator inside, even though they look warm and safe the temperature can plummet to an unsafe level. Always take them indoors with you.
- Keep them away from frozen lakes, rivers and ponds. The risk of a dog falling through the ice into the cold lake or pond water is a very real threat, do not allow them to run out onto frozen bodies of water and therefore limit the risk of them falling through the ice. As the snow melts keep your dog away from rivers and streams as fast flowing water currents can sweep them away quickly.
- Keep them away from winter puddles. There is always a risk that these puddles could be tainted with antifreeze that has leaked from parked vehicles.
- Be alert for cats seeking shelter under the hood of a car. Always bang the hood of your car to scare any cat that could be taking shelter there giving it a chance to escape before you start the engine.
- Wipe their feet and stomach after being outdoors. This removes salt and ice melt from their feet and skin. This, in turn, helps prevent irritation, burns and accidental ingestion.
The winter weather can be fun, so let us keep them safe, warm and dry and enjoy the remainder of the winter season.
Written by Fairmont Animal Hospital