When winter weather arrives, there’s a great deal we must prepare our precious pets for. This winter, protect your pets and keep them safe from the snow and harsh seasonal conditions with our helpful tips.
Winter is here, so as you organize your seasonal gear like coats, mittens, and boots, remember that your pets need to be protected too. Unfortunately, pets are not immune to cold and snowy weather just because they have fur - they can still be susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite (Source: Ontario SPCA).
We hope you find our tips to protect your furry friends from the cold and snow this winter helpful!
7 Great Tips on How to Protect Your Pets This Winter
1. Don’t Shave Your Dog
If you have a long-haired dog, opt to trim them instead of shaving them since a longer coat will provide more warmth. For short-haired dogs, consider putting them in a comfortable dog sweater or jacket before taking them outside, as this will add an extra layer of warmth.
2. Pay Attention to Paws
After coming in from a walk, be sure to wipe down your pet's feet with warm water and a towel to remove any chemicals/salt used to melt snow. These things can cause serious issues for their paws including irritation or cuts if not removed. Also, trim any long fur around the paws and use a "Paw Protecting Balm" to prevent ice from sticking in between their pads (this also protects them against chemicals/salt).
3. Keep Them on a Leash
Always keep your dog on a leash and never let them roam freely during winter weather, as you never know when the weather will turn. Sometimes dogs can lose their scent and become lost in the snow.
4. Take Shorter Walks
When the temperature is severely cold, be sure to take shorter walks to prevent your pet from developing hypothermia. Small dogs should NOT be walked outdoors in extremely cold weather.
5. Don’t Let the Cat Out
Never let your cat wander freely outside because they may seek shelter under your car near the engine (as protection from winter weather). If they do, they could be severely injured when the engine starts. Always tap on the hood of the car before starting it to ensure the cat didn’t get inside.
6. Store Antifreeze Properly
Antifreeze is used often during the winter and is deadly to pets. Ensure the bottles are properly sealed and that they have not leaked; your pets can experience kidney failure within 24 hours after consumption.
7. Never Leave Your Pets in the Car
This should go without saying, but you should never leave your pet in the car, especially not when the temperature is freezing. Cars hold in the cold and act like refrigerators which could lead to death.