As winter settles throughout the Fox Valley, Anderson Animal Shelter urges pet owners to think twice when letting pets outside for extended periods of time. Temperatures below freezing along with wind chill can prove deadly for our domesticated pets.
The following are tips from the experts at Anderson, to keep your pets safe during the blistering cold winter months:
Indoor pet tips:
During severe weather, dogs should be let out only to relieve themselves. Keep cats indoors. Remove ice, salt and caked mud from your pet's paws and coat immediately. Before walks, apply Vaseline or try doggie shoes on your dogs' paws to protect him/her from sidewalk salt and chemicals. Wipe Vasoline from paws upon returning. Don’t place your pet’s bed on the floor in a cold or drafty area of your home. Indoor dogs typically receive less exercise during cold weather and therefore may require fewer calories; feed smaller portions in order to avoid weight gain.
Outdoor pet tips:
In severe weather, allow your pet to be in your house or garage. Make sure your pet’s water is never frozen. Outdoor pets typically need more food in cold weather because they must burn more calories to keep warm. Check for frostbite, especially on paws and ears. Keep an eye out for and clean up all antifreeze spills—one lick of the sweet-tasting fluid can be fatal to an animal.