Hey Fluffy, it’s cold out there: Cold weather pet tips

Just ask Fido and Fluffy, its getting cold . Your pets know it’s getting colder. At our house, my golden retriever Junior now likes to find  sunny spots to curl up and dream of his rubber duckie and swimming at summer camp.
( I think he also wants a Latte, and a new Stephen King book to read, but that’s another blog post)

photo credit: tonx via photopin cc
photo credit: tonx via photopin cc

Here in Texas , we think  about  keeping our pets safe in the Texas heat , but cold weather can also be a risk to our best friends.

Here are some tips  for winter weather for your pets:

1)  Keep pets inside.

Keep  your pets inside during cold weather. While some breeds are more suited for cold weather, dogs and cats  should not be left outside in below freezing weather for long periods.  Rearrange  sleeping areas for  cozy warmth and provide additional blankets if necessary.

2) Check paws.( your pets not yours, although you can look at yours too if you feel the need-go for it)

Inspect  your dog’s paws frequently for signs of cold-weather injury or damage . Paw pads can crack or bleed from ice accumulation between toes. Wipe down  your pet’s feet, legs and belly to remove chemicals that your dog may bring in on his feet. He may bring them in on paws when he walks on ice that has been treated with deicers or other chemicals. When he licks his paws, he may ingest harmful chemicals.

3) Know your pet ‘s cold tolerance.

Pets’ tolerance to cold varies. Observe your pet and know how he or she  handles cold weather and develop an individual plan to meet that pet’s needs. Younger pets,older pets,ill pets and puppies and kittens may not tolerate cold weather well.

4) Make noise before you start up that vehicle .

The heat of a warm car or truck may seem like a nice spot for an outside or feral cat.  Check underneath your vehicle  and make noise before you fire up your car or truck. Look before you start.  Honk the horn  or bang on the hood before starting the engine to prevent a deadly injury. This may also help you wake up in the morning.

5)Maintain a pet- safe winter  environment

Prevent poisoning.Clean up any antifreeze spills quickly. Even  small amounts of antifreeze can be deadly to pets.

6)  Dress for success. (Ok this one can apply to both of you)

If your pet is bothered by the cold, now is the time to have Fido model his or her latest fashion forward sweater or coat. Dog outer wear should not be allowed to stay on if it is wet, and should fit properly.

7)  Collar, chip and ID pets.

Make sure your pet has a well-fitting collar with up-to-date identification and contact information. ( Junior wants me to put his email address and a link to his blog on his tag and microchip ,but that may be a little over-the-top ). Collars and Identification are always important, but in winter snow and ice can hide recognizable scents that could  help your pet find his/her way back home.  An up to date microchip is a more permanent means of identification.

8) Don’t leave pets alone in a cold car.

Hot cars are a known threat to pets , but cold cars also pose a risk to your pet’s health. A  car can rapidly cool down in cold weather.  Pets that are young, old, ill, or thin are particularly susceptible to cold and should not be left in cold cars.

9) Provide shelter, food, water.

It’s best to keep pets indoors during cold weather,  but If  you are unable to keep your dog inside during cold weather,  provide a warm, solid shelter against wind and  unlimited access to fresh, non-frozen water .

10) Winter Wellness and Health Care

Keep your pet at a healthy weight throughout the winter.  Talk to your veterinarian about your pet’s nutritional needs during cold weather. Preventive health care keeps your pet healthy and robust in cold weathers.

Winter can be a great time for you and your pet to enjoy a whole new look to the area.   Junior even discovered a snow cave  under a Crape Myrtle in our back yard one year.

Let us know other cold weather pet tips you have . Especially those of you who really have cold weather.

One more thing, we just heard you say to yourself  ,” Geez, these two sissies in Texas,they don’t know what COLD is. And one is  a GOLDEN RETRIEVER.”
OK we admit it…here at the Daily Junior, yes, we are strong Texans. Are there any other kind?

But the secret is out.
Don’t tell anyone.

 The Daily Junior Staff (wearing parkas)

For more information on these and other tips for keeping pets safe and healthy in the winter;

ASPCA  at https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cold-weather-tips

American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA).  http://www.healthypet.com

Texas And M VetMed  http://vetmed.tamu.edu/news/pet-talk/cold-weather-and-your-pet#.VGjYoJK9KSM

3 thoughts on “Hey Fluffy, it’s cold out there: Cold weather pet tips

  1. Thank you, Ms. Jill, these are good tips. My People never thought they would be the kind of humans to put boots on their dogs, but the kinds of deicers and salts used here in the city really hurt my paws. If I don’t wear booties, my People have to pick me up and carry me to a clean spot, because I just can’t walk at all on that stuff.
    I can’t say I enjoy putting my boots (we use the thin rubber Pawz kind), but once I have them on, I can run and walk on icy sidewalks, no problem.

  2. What excellent, excellent information for this time of year (I live in the Midwest, and it’s brutally frigid today). Thanks for sharing — great post! Also, love the latte art! I’ve never seen a dog whipped up that way, 🙂

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