|Pet owners need to take safety precautions for their dogs since these animals can be susceptible to sickness and injuries. / Phoot by: Jaromír Chalabala via 123rf|
Winter is coming. As the temperature levels drop, everyone is cozying up using their warm blankets and a cup of hot beverage. Unfortunately, some animals consider the winter season as an uncomfortable time in their lives. Our pets and most especially the homeless animals are having trouble keeping themselves warm and cozy.
The cold is not just uncomfortable for some dogs in winter. For places with extremely cold conditions, it can also be dangerous to their health. This is why pet owners need to take safety precautions for their dogs since these animals can be susceptible to sickness and injuries that will need to be addressed properly and immediately.
Avoid Staying Outside
An article published by Hills Pet, an American pet food company, emphasized that pets should never be outside for a long period of time when the temperature becomes colder. Even though they are covered with fur, it doesn’t mean that they are safe from the harsh weather. Spending too much out in the cold can be hazardous to their health, which is why it is suggested to limit their time outdoors during sub-freezing temperatures.
Pet owners and their pets can still spend time out in the snow during potty breaks or playtime. It is a treat for both to play in the snow when the temperature goes up. Watching the pets prance around and allow the snow to blanket their fur is a delight to see. Your dog will also love you even more if you play with them as you throw snowballs and watch them try and fetch each one of them. Aside from that, it can also be a form of exercise, which is essential in keeping their weight healthy during the winter season.
If you have an outdoor playpen or dog house, make sure to bring it inside after brief periods outside. Never leave your dog outside overnight during winter even if they are used to spending more time outdoors. You may set up an area inside your garage where they can keep themselves warm. If the dog prefers spending any amount of time in the dog house, make sure to leave it with blankets or towels to snuggle up in. It is also a great idea to invest in some warming lamps that can help your dog keep its body temperature regulated.
|Your dog will love you even more if you play with them as you throw snowballs and watch them try and fetch each one of them. / Photo by: Aleksandra Suzi via 123rf|
The Online Dog Trainer, New Zealand's leading dog training experts who work with clients around the world via the internet portal, recommended that your dog’s bed should have enough blankets or covers to keep it warm. It doesn’t have to be an expensive material, these can be made out of old sacks, hay, or soft and thick blankets.
But if you have wool blankets that you’re willing to lend out, it can be such a help for them to keep warm even more. For maximum heat retention, you can also place blankets in a doughnut shape with space for your dog to curl up in the center. This can protect it from the cold on all sides and it will only lose heat upward rather than all directions.
Pet owners can also invest in a doggy jacket. It might be hard for them to get used to wearing it, so it takes a lot of patience to have them wear it. But it will be cute to see them wearing one, and, more importantly, it can help them keep warm during the cold season. You can create some matchy sweater for you and your dog for the upcoming holiday season!
|If you have wool blankets that you’re willing to lend out, it can be such a help for the dogs to keep warm even more. / Photo by: Alexander Zhenzhirov via 123rf|
Provide Shelter, Food, and Water
Stray animals can withstand temperatures around 15 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit. However, they are still in danger of hypothermia. USA Today, a multi-platform news and information media company, reported that there are cities that give away small, insulated boxes that can serve as shelter for stray cats. Concerned citizens can also provide Styrofoam coolers, which are a great material for animals to stay warm in.
Even though you are not allowed to keep a stray dog inside your house, make it your responsibility to provide food and water for the animal. Leaving food and warm water available to them will be a huge help for them to survive the freezing weather.
Check for Winter-Related Illnesses
The American Veterinary Medical Associations suggested having your pets examined by a veterinarian to check for medical conditions that can become worse when the cold weather hits. Dogs can suffer from arthritis that gets worse especially during the cold season.
A regular visit to the vet will give you enough knowledge about your pet’s tolerance for the cold weather and the necessary measures you need to take to insure your pet’s safety and health. Frequently check your dog’s paws to look for signs of cold weather-related injuries such as cracked or bleeding paw pads.