The American Veterinarians Medical Association has compiled a list of some cold weather safety guidelines for your pet. Some of these may be a bit of a wake up call to some pet owners.

I have been happy to see many dog owners in my neighborhood walking their dogs with booties on their feet. When we let our two little dogs out to go the bathroom I watch them to make sure they do not get cold paws, do their business and get back in the house as quickly as possible. Here are some of the Safety Measures we all need to think about and put into practice.

  • Winter Wellness- Make sure that your pet has an annual exam, cold weather can often make some conditions worse.
  • Know Your Pets Limits-Not all dogs can tolerate cold weather as well as others, or enjoy the cold and snow. This is your responsibility to know how your pet tolerates  certain conditions.
  • Provide Choices- Pets will tend to change where they like to lay down when your house is colder, offer options if possible to keep them comfortable.
  • Stay Inside- No pets should be outside for long periods of time even if they are a breed that tolerates colder weather, especially when temps fall below zero.
  • Check Your Vehicle Before you start it-Sometimes animals or feral cats will climb up into engine blocks of cars, pound on the hood, honk your horn or make some noise before you start your engine.
  • Dress them up-If your dog has a short hair coat a dry sweater will help hold in the heat and keep them comfortable.
  • Wipe Them Down- When your dog gets back into the house make sure and wipe down your pets feet, legs and belly from salt and other chemicals they may get on their fur. Please use pet safe salt on your property as well.
  • Collar and Microchip- Pets that get loose in the winter often have a hard time finding the scent to get back home. Make sure they have ID tags and are microchipped for a safe return home.

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