Remember outdoor pets this winter

By Ivy Potter -

With winter just around the corner, and the temperatures dropping lower and lower each night it is important to remember your furry friends during these cold months ahead. Although bringing cats and dogs indoors when temperatures drop below freezing is ideal, there are other simple precautions you can take to make your pet more comfortable this winter.

“Animals that are outside should have straw in their houses to keep them warm,” said Jackie Servidea of the Animal Welfare League. “You want to make sure your pet’s water bowl isn’t frozen, even checking it several times a day would be helpful. Heated bowls are a great idea for outdoor pets during the winter months to prevent their water from freezing, and of course making sure they are being fed properly.”

According to the Humane Society of the United States, a dry, draft-free shelter that is large enough to allow them to move comfortably, but also small enough to retain body heat is recommeded with either a plastic, or burlap doorway cover. A shelter that is several inches off the ground and insulated with straw or cedar chips is also beneficial to keeping your pet warm.

Pets who spend a significant time outdoors also require more food during the winter months because keeping warm depleates energy. Using plastic bowls, when a heated bowl is not available, is also recommended to ensure your pet’s tongue does not get stuck to a frozen metal bowl.

Additional steps pet owners can take to prevent their pet experiencing harm this winter is wiping down paws after a walk, and taking extra precautions when starting up the car. Rock salt used to treat icy roads and sidewalks is very dangerous for your pets. Wiping down your dog’s feet after a walk or time spent outside can prevent your dog from licking, and therefore ingesting, the salt which can lead to severe medical issues. Also, cats often seek shelter under and inside car engines because of their warmth. By just tapping on the hood of your car before starting it, you could save a life.

By Ivy Potter

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932

Reach: Ivy Potter (740) 353-3101 Extension 1932