Tips For Protecting Dogs and Cats From The Cold
Temperatures are in the single digits and we want to be sure that dogs and cats are protected from the cold. If you see a pet outside for too long, please be their voice and keep them safe and alive during these dangerously low conditions.
If you see an animal left outside in the cold, please contact your local law enforcement agency.
The SPCA also shares these tips about keeping your dogs and cats safe in cold winter conditions.
What You Should Know:
- Prolonged exposure to extreme cold and freezing temperatures can lead to life threatening hypothermia (severe lowering of the normal body temperature), especially for smaller dogs, cats, dogs with short hair, and all animals who are acclimated to our typically warmer climate.
- Ensure that outdoor water sources for pets and livestock are checked frequently as they can freeze over and prevent access to water.
- If unable to be inside, dogs habituated to the outdoors must be protected by a dry, draft-free doghouse that is large enough to allow the dog to sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough to hold in his body heat. The floor should be raised a few inches off the ground. Provide extra dry blankets and towels and turn the house away from the wind, covering the doorway with a flap of heavy waterproof fabric or plastic. Since most animals in our area are not acclimated to extremely cold weather, The SPCA advises bringing them inside if at all possible.
- Dogs and cats not habituated to the outdoors need to be brought inside to ensure their safety.
- Do not leave indoor/outdoor housecats outside overnight. They are not acclimated to the weather conditions and can suffer hypothermia or become lost, stolen, or injured.
- During the winter, outdoor cats sometimes sleep under the hoods of cars. When the motor is started, the cat can be injured or killed by the fan belt. If there are outdoor cats in your area, bang loudly on the car hood before starting the engine to give the cat a chance to escape.
- Do not leave your pet alone in a car during cold weather. A car can act as a refrigerator in the winter, holding in the cold.
- Pets found suffering from the effects of severe cold weather should be taken immediately to a veterinarian. During transport, the animal should be wrapped in warm, dry towels and blankets.