Protecting Your Pets During the Cold Winter Months (brrrrr!)

We’ve had some chilly nights this week so it’s about time to start thinking about how to keep our pets warm during the cold winter months. We know, we know, some people don’t consider 30 degrees real cold weather, but for us in the south, it feels downright chilly.

Here are some great tips from the American Veterinary Medical Association to keep your pets safe and warm this winter:

Know the limits. Walks and outside time might need to be reduced when it’s very cold, and when there is ice and/or snow on the ground. This applies to long-haired dogs too.

    • When you do walk, check Fido’s paws for cracks, bleeding, or other abnormalities. These can all be signs of cold-related injury.

Keep your pets inside. Cats and dogs are susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite just like humans are. Make every attempt possible not to leave them outside and remember – it’s much better to be overly cautious with these things.

Use pet safe deicers and wipe your pup down after walks. Some common household deicing products might contain harmful chemicals that can damage your pup’s paws and legs.

Be careful with indoor space heaters, fireplaces, and other personal heating devices. Your pets don’t know that space heaters are dangerous, so you have to do the thinking for them. Keep these products out of their way and avoid leaving these items on when you are not able to keep a watchful eye.

Feed well, but do not overfeed. The myth that pets need a little extra weight to keep them warm during the winter is simply false. Keep them on a well-balanced, nutritious diet that helps them maintain a healthy weight.

As always, make sure your pet is microchipped and always wearing their collar. 

If you travel with your pets, consider carrying a pet first aid and safety kit in the car in case of problems, just as you would for your human family members. This might include a blanket, extra food and water, and any medications they’re on.

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