Did you know that, just like in summer, you shouldn’t leave your pet in a car when it is cold out? Even a short period of time can result in your pet freezing, as cars act like refrigerators during chilly winter months. Here are eight myths about pets and winter care that have been debunked by Carol Bryant of FIDO Friendly magazine.
We also recommend checking out these winter exercise guidelines and cold weather tips from our friends at the ASPCA®. Stay warm!
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It's cold outside, but these tips can help keep your pet healthy and safe in spite of the chill.
• Keep your cat inside if possible, since felines can freeze, get lost, or suffer injuries outdoors in the cold.
• Antifreeze has a sweet taste cats tend to like. Help avoid an accidental poisoning by cleaning spills or leaks.
• Cats love sleeping in warm places. Prevent burns by protecting your cat from fireplaces, stoves and heaters.
• Wipe off your dog after being outdoors to remove salt and other chemicals that can be harmful if licked and ingested. Also consider using pet-safe de-icing salt.
• Trim longhaired dogs to avoid ice and salt clinging to them, but don't go too short or they might get chilly.
• Consider a coat or sweater, especially for shorthaired pups, to help retain body heat and prevent dry skin.
Also, be sure to offer a nutritious diet with plenty of protein to help make sure your fluffy friend's coat and health are in top shape. For more tips, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and check out our pet safety website.
The snow and cold have arrived. If you are looking for fun winter activities for you and your pet, these ideas will chase Old Man Winter away:
• Create a pet playground with discarded gift boxes and wrapping paper.
• Play hide and seek with your pet by hiding treats around the house.
• Practice a new trick, like speaking, shaking hands, or rolling over.
• Give your pet a treat dispensing toy to knock around the house.
• Throw a small ball across the room for a good old fashioned game of fetch.
And don’t forget one of the best ways to warm up on a cold day – a good, long cuddle with your furry friend.
Even though the weather outside might be frightful, it’s still important to take your dog outdoors for fresh air and exercise. To help, the ASPCA® experts provide guidelines for pet parents to follow that will keep their dog’s skin and paws in tip-top shape during walks this winter.
Before the Walk:
• Dress your dog in a sweater to help retain body heat and protect his or her skin from the cold.
• Trim your pooch’s hair to keep ice, salt or chemicals from clinging to it and drying onto the skin.
• If your dog doesn’t like to wear booties, rub petroleum jelly on the bottom of your pet’s feet to protect them from irritation.
During the Walk:
• Keep your dog on grass or snow and avoid salty, slippery sidewalks.
• Carry a towel with you to wipe off your pet’s paws, if needed.
• Remember, if it’s too cold outside for you, it’s probably too cold for your furry best friend. Try short, frequent walks instead of one long walk.
After the Walk:
• Wash and towel dry your dog’s feet to remove any salt or chemicals. Don’t forget to clean in between your dog’s toes!
• Brush your pet’s hair to stimulate overall blood circulation.
• Make sure your pooch has plenty of water to drink, which will keep his or her skin hydrated.
For more suggestions, read ASPCA’s Top Ten Winter Skin & Paw Care Tips or Cold Weather Tips.