Super cold weather can be dangerous for dogs!

Posted By elaine on January 31, 2011

cold-dogA snow storm with bitter cold weather is on the way and it is time to make sure furry family members stay warm.

Although they are equipped with fur coats, dogs and other domestic animals can still suffer from frostbite and exposure, and they can become dehydrated when water sources freeze. So be kind and bring them in!

Here are some other tips to keep your pets safe and comfy when the weather is harsh.

• Keep animals inside. This is especially important to remember when it comes to puppies and kittens, elderly animals, small animals, and dogs with short hair, including pointers, Beagles, Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, and Dobermans. Short-haired animals will also benefit from a warm sweater or coat on walks.

• Don’t allow your cat or dog to roam freely outdoors. During winter, cats sometimes climb under the hoods of cars to be near warm engines and are badly injured or killed when the car is started.

cold-nowose• If your dogs spend much time outside, you should increase food rations during cold spells because they are burning more calories to keep warm. Don’t free feed, but up their food and/ or give them a food higher in fat and protein.

• Wipe off your dogs’ or cats’ legs, feet, and stomachs after they come in from the snow. Salt and other chemicals can make your animals sick if they ingest them while cleaning themselves. If they get very wet and have longer coats dry your pet thoroughly to the skin. Wet fur left against skin can cause issues like hot spots.

• If your dog must be left out while you are at work; make sure that they have shelter. Doghouses should be made of wood (because metal is a poor insulator) and positioned in a sunny location during cold weather. Raise the house off the ground several inches and put a flap over the door to keep out cold drafts. Use straw for bedding—rugs and blankets can get wet and freeze.

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