- Keep a tight leash: Never let your dog off the leash on snow or ice, especially during a snowstorm. Pets frequently lose their scent on snow and ice, especially if snow is falling at a fast rate, and your pet can easily lose his sense of direction.
- Keep pets at home: Never leave your pet alone in a car during cold weather. A car can act as a refrigerator in the winter, holding in the cold. Your pet could literally freeze to death.
- Always dry pets’ wet feet: Thoroughly wipe off your pet’s legs and stomach when she comes in from the rain, snow or ice. Check her sensitive foot pads, which may be bleeding from snow or ice encrusted in them. Your pet may also pick up salt and other chemicals on her feet accidentally. These chemicals could hurt her if she swallows them while licking her feet.
- Check cars for cats: During the winter, stray or neglected cats outdoors sometimes sleep under the hood of the car where it’s warm and comfortable. If you start the motor, cats could get caught in or flung about by the fan belt, causing serious injury or death.
- Keep outdoor sessions short: Take your dog outside only for as long as it takes for him to relieve himself.
- Bathe pets only when necessary: Your pet runs the chance of becoming ill when wet, especially in cold weather.
- Keep pets warm: Limit the clipping of your pet’s hair in the cold winter months, keeping your pet as warm as possible.
- Hungry pets: Speak to your veterinarian about increasing your pet’s supply of food, particularly protein, to keep his fur thick and healthy through the winter months.
- Antifreeze is poison: Because of its sweet taste, animals are attracted to it. Be sure to clean up spills thoroughly, and consider switching to an animal-friendly antifreeze.
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