During the winter season it's important to keep a close eye on your pets as the temperatures drop.
Here is how to keep your pets safe according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
- Cold weather can worsen some medical conditions like arthritis, so make sure your pet has had his/her preventive care exam.
- Though cats and dogs have fur, they are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should be kept inside during cold weather. Thick-coated dog breeds, like huskies and other dogs bred for colder climates, are more tolerant of colder weather, but no pet should be kept outside for long periods of times in below-freezing weather.
- Know your pet's tolerance for the cold weather - elderly pets, short-haired pets, short legged pets and pets with medical conditions have more difficulties with the the cold temps. Whereas long-haired or thick-coated dogs tend to have a higher tolerance for the colder weather.
- A warm vehicle engine can be an appealing heat source for outdoor cats so check your before starting the engine.
- Check your dog's paws for signs of cold-weather injury or damage, such as cracked paw pads or bleeding. Can help to clip your dog's hair between your dog's toes.
- Consider dressing your dog in a sweater or dog coat.
- Make sure your pet has a well-fitting collar or a microchip with up-to-date information. Many pets become lost in the winter because the snow and ice can hide recognizable scents.
- Keep your pet at a healthy weight throughout the winter. Extra weight can cause health problems and outdoor pets require more calories in the winter to generate body heat and energy to keep them warm.
- If you are unable to keep your dog inside provide shelter to protect them from the wind. Make sure they have unlimited access to fresh, non-frozen water.