It is important to consider how the seasonal weather affects your pets. We have to remember that there are cold weather dangers, and our pets can become victims of improper shelter, lack of fresh water, antifreeze poisoning, frostbite and even hypothermia. Here are a few tips that can help keep your pets warms and happy.
Winterize their Skin and Coat:
- Check the pads of their paws for cracked pads, broken nails or snow and ice damage.
- To distribute natural oils to our pets fur, brush their coat often.
- Protect their paws by having them wear booties.
Winterize Pet Shelters:
- If you have outside dogs you can add straw for insulation to doghouses.
- If you have outside cats you can provide a snug, warm bed. Be sure the bed is not directly on the cold ground or concrete. Your local pet stores carry outdoor heated beds.
- Watch for antifreeze leaks, it tastes good to animals, and is deadly to pets or wild animals.
- For indoor pets, always remember to maintain supervision when there is a fire in the fireplace. Use protective fire screens.
- For yours and the pet’s safety install carbon monoxide detectors, and fire alarms. Be sure to test and replace the batteries at least two times a year. Perhaps choose a time to replace batteries such as when the time changes, in the fall and in the spring.
- Pets are more sensitive to temperature changes than we are, so keep the temperature level.
Winterize them against Frostbite
- Frostbite affects their ears, toes, tails, scrotum and areas least covered by fur.
- Signs of frostbite on yours pets include red swollen areas or skin that is very pale and white.
- Immerse the frostbitten area in warm, not hot, water for about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Call your veterinarian.
Winterize against Hypothermia
- When pets are exposed to very cold temperatures and or the wind is blowing for an extended period of time.
- Some symptoms might include shivering, low body temperature, drowsiness, exhaustion, and stumbling.
- Raise the pet’s temperature to treat hypothermia. Hot water bottles, warm towels, or immerse the pet in room temperature water, adding warmer water slowly.
- Get the animal to drink warm liquids.
- Call your veterinarian.
Winterize Your Pet
- Many pets have increased appetites during cold-weather months so provide extra food.
- Go ahead and dress your pet up in sweaters, raincoats, hats, and booties for paw protection.
- Have their nails trimmed regularly so that they will be able to maintain their footing in icy conditions.
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