When the winter season is around the corner, it is a good idea to become familiar with how to keep your pet safe and comfortable when the weather turns cold.
Make sure to provide your pet with proper shelter. If your pet is a house cat or dog, place his bed or crate in a warm, safe place, away from drafts. Outdoor pets need well-insulated shelter that is water and windproof. The house should be elevated off the ground so moisture can’t get inside. Install a “doggie door”, a door flap, to protect against blustery drafts and gusts of wind. Extra blankets and straw will make your pet feel extra cozy.
Huskies and Malamutes don’t mind winter because of their thick fur but smaller, short-haired dogs have less tolerance for low temperatures. Short-haired big dogs like Doberman’s and Boxers can get cold in the wintry weather. Dog sweaters are something to consider for winter walks if necessary.
Cold weather zaps a pet’s energy so if your pet is an outdoor pet, he or she may need 25-50% more calories than normal. Ask your veterinarian about what is right for your pet.
Just a tiny lick of antifreeze from your driveway or gutter can kill your precious pet. Ethylene glycol, one of the main ingredients in antifreeze, attracts pets with its sweet smell and taste. Make a quick check of your family vehicles to be sure one of them is not leaking antifreeze. Clean up any spills immediately and keep containers tightly closed and stored in a safe place away from your dog or cat.