As the temperatures continue to get colder, it’s easy for us to bundle up and add layers to keep us warm in the winter. Unfortunately for our pets, it’s not that easy. For them, they basically just have their fur or hair and that’s it in order to keep them warm, but sometimes that’s just not enough. With so many special risks that are posed by cold weather, it’s important to know the facts and how to keep your pets safe during the winter.
Bring your pet indoors
Regardless of what you’ve done in the past, keeping your pet indoors during the winter is the best way to keep them safe. Not only is it important to bring them inside because of the temperatures, but also remember that there are predators looking for food in the winter, and if your dog is tired and cold from being outside, predators might see them as an easy treat as other food becomes scarce in the colder months.
If your pet absolutely has to stay outdoors, make sure you provide them with a warm, solid shelter that will protect them from the wind and snow. In addition, it’s imperative that you find a way to provide your pet with an un-frozen water source. Finally, checking on your pet regularly while they’re out in the cold is a necessity.
Keep your eyes peeled for signs of frostbite if your pet is left outdoors for an extended period of time. If you do indeed suspect frostbite, place your pet in warm water for 20 minutes to help dissolve ice crystals and restore blood flow. Remember – rubbing frostbitten tissue will only cause futher damage, so be careful!
Never let your dog off leash on snow or ice
Snow and ice are tricky surfaces for dogs, and while they can normally keep themselves standing on both, they can often lose their scent or become lost through frozen surfaces of ponds, rivers, streams or lakes. Dogs are much more likely to become lost in the winter as opposed to any other season. For this reason, having ID tags made for your pets is imperative.
Don’t forget to wipe
It’s easy to forget that unlike you, your pet is walking on the snow and ice with their bare paws. With this, they can pick up salt, antifreeze and other chemicals that are used as de-icers and can actually cause life-threatening health issues to pets. The snow and ice can also cause your pet’s paws to crack and bleed, which is just another reason you should be wiping your pet’s paws!
Warm place to sleep
Just like you pile up the blankets on your bed when it’s cold outside, your pets need a warm place to sleep during the winter months as well. Not only is it important to make sure your pet has a warm and comfortable bed, but you also need to make sure that their bed isn’t on the floor right in front of a draft to ensure they’re warm throughout the night.
We all love our pets and want to keep them healthy and happy during the colder months but many of us don’t realize the dangers that winter brings. By following the tips above, you’ll be able to keep your furry friend healthy and happy during whatever weather the winter months bring!
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Jessica McNeal is a freelance writer and lover of all animals. Jessica recently purchased pet ID tags for all her furry friends in order to keep them safe and accounted for. For more information regarding pet ID tags, click here.