Protect Your Pets From Winter Hazards
The weather outside can still be frightful. Here are tips to keep your pets safe in the cold.
If it's cold enough outside, dogs and cats can get frostbite. Most susceptible are the tips their ears and tails. Dogs with long ears, like Basset Hounds and Weimaraners, are especially at risk.
While most dogs wear their own winter coats, when the temperatures dips below around freezing, small dogs need a little help to keep warm. The smaller the dog, the more difficulty maintaining body temperature, which is why a coat or sweater is a good idea for pups under around 20 pounds. Sight hounds have a problem which many people may resent - they have too little body fat to protect against the cold. That's why breeds including Greyhounds, Salukis and Whippets also need winter-wear to keep them comfortable.
And these days, there are so many choices, from "hoodies" with football team logos to faux fur designer coats. Although there is something odd about a dog looking like she's wearing a leopard coat.
Of course, some dogs relish the cold. After all, breeds such as Malamutes, Siberian Huskies and Samoyeds sometimes prefer zero degrees to being indoors. Still, if even an Arctic dog is going to be kept outdoors for any period of time, it will need unfrozen drinking water (you can buy water bowls with heaters to prevent freezing) and shelter from wind and snow.
Little booties may not appear macho, but sled dogs even wear them. Because dogs perspire some from their paws, tiny ice balls can form between the paw pads, which can be very uncomfortable. Also with paws unprotected, it may sting to walk on ordinary street salt, so consider alternative "pet friendly" salt (such as Morton Safe-T-Pet Ice Melt). Not only is it far gentler to canine paws, but also less damaging to concrete.
Other options to prevent the ice balls and deter street salt from sticking to the pads are to spray an unflavored no-stick cooking spray (such as Pam) on your dog's paws or use a product called Musher's Secret (available online and at many pet stores).
For cats, there are always dangers to being outdoors, but this is particularly true when temperatures dip. The good news is, cats are pretty resourceful at finding warmth. But that's also the bad news. To a cat seeking heat, a warm car hood is easy to find and slink into. As a result, veterinarians in cold weather climates too often treat cats mangled (some don't survive) when drivers innocently start their car engines. It's not a bad idea to follow
Desperate for water, cats kept outside may drink anything they can find. Antifreeze is always tempting for cats or dogs. While pet friendly antifreeze may be safe, most is deadly. Less than a quarter a cup of antifreeze can kill a Great Dane, and a teaspoon can end the life of a small dog or a cat. Even better, seek out antifreeze brands which contain bittering agents, making them distasteful to pets.
Some family cats or dogs live in garages (never a good idea), and others can accidentally find their way inside a closed garage when a car is being warmed up. As a result, pets can suffer carbon monoxide poisoning. It only takes is around 10 to 15 minutes for a 10-pound pet to die in sealed off garage with a car running and no way out.
A common concern, particularly as the weather wavers from just below freezing up to the 30s, are ponds, rivers, lakes, and particularly retention ponds in condominium complexes. The ice may not be as solid as you think. Dogs are as susceptible to hypothermia as people. Those falling into freezing water may die. Unfortunately, so may people attempting to rescue their best friends. On larger bodies of water, another concern is a confused dog taking off in the wrong direction, away from the shore. While the water may be frozen at the shoreline, it may not be further out.
Where there are snowdrifts, some dogs avoid them. Other dogs love bounding into the snow, which is generally just fine. But jumping in and out of snow isn't like walking down the street, and older dogs or dogs not in good condition are prone to pull muscles they're not accustomed to using. The rule is simply not to allow your dog to overdo it. Some dogs just don't when to stop, and it up to their people to step in to prevent injuries and to keep pets safe.
Availale at Amazon.com:
Recent Pet Articles
- Cat Food Ingredients for Good Health
- Dog Food Ingredients for Good Health
- Save Money on Winter Dog-grooming
- How to Prepare Your Dog for Playgroup
- Protect Your Pets From Winter Hazards
- Importance of L-carnitine for Cats
- Writers Who Love Their Cats
- Importance of L-carnitine for Dogs
- Big Benefits of Small-dog Day Care
- Victoria Stilwell Rejects Dog Training Based on Intimidation
- Veterinary Trend: Cat-only Clinics
- Happy Tails Books Author Kyla Duffy
- Veterinary Trend: Dog-only Clinics
- Cat Food That Maintains Healthy Digestion
- Dog Food That Maintains Healthy Digestion
- Star of Its Me or the Dog Has Strong Views on Dog Training
- Check Out Inspirational Books for The Pet Lovers in Your Life
- New Pet Products Make Ideal Holiday Gifts
- Can You Afford Your Vet Bills?
- Saving Homeless Dogs: One at a Time
- 'Special-Needs' Pets Have Plenty To Offer
- The Dos and Donts of Walking Cats
- Your Cat's Unique Nutritional Needs
- Is Your Cat at Risk for Diabetes?
- Are You a Dog Person?
- Your Dog's Unique Nutritional Needs
- Cats and Songbirds Can Live in Harmony
- Adopt a Senior Pet Month Saves Lives
- Adopting a Shelter Dog Can be a Blessing
- Diabetes in Dogs: Symptoms and Treatment
- New Hope for Canine Cancer
- Control Your Dog's Weight With Food
- Help Shelter Cats Even if You Can't Adopt
- Mealtime in a Multi-cat Home
- No Perfect Answer For Deterring Pesky Neighborhood Cats
- Rabies Doesn't Just Strike in Old Movies
- It's Flu Season for People And Dogs
- Help Your Dog Go Green at Mealtime
- Keep Your Dog Safe From Starting Fires
- Veterinary Care at Your Doorstep
- Host a Cat Playdate
- How to Know Your Cat's Vet Needs
- Help Your Cat Go Green at Mealtime
- New Books Abound for Animal Lovers
- Multi-cat Food Explained
- What Not to Feed Your Dog
- Ringworm: The Leading Cause of Cat Skin Disease
- Experts Make New Site A Beacon for Solving Pet Behavior Problems
- Keep Your Cat Cool This Summer
- Top 10 Questions for Your Dog's Veterinarian
- Don't Let Your Pooch Overheat In the Summer Sun
- 7 Food Ingredients for Your Dog's Health
- Top 10 Questions for Your Cat's Veterinarian
- Protect Your Dog This Summer
- How Dog Food Is Made and Tested
- How Dogs React to Human Infants
- How Cat Food Is Made and Tested
- Cats Are Inspiring New Supercomputers
- Are Tick and Flea Control Products Safe?
- Summer Fun for Dogs
- Cat Fur Can Identify Criminals
- Improve Cat Veterinary Office Visits
- Prebiotics Support Your Cat's Inner Strength
- Are Tick and Flea Control Products Safe for Your Cat?
- Prebiotics Support Your Dog's Inner Strength
- The 'Animal Nanny' Cat Sitter Cares for Lonely Cats
- Veterinary Specialists Save Many Lives
- Dog Park Etiquette
- Calm the Fears of Your Scaredy-Cat
- How to Prevent Dog Bites
- Fashion for Paws Model Shares Dog Runway Tips
- Labrador Retrievers Still Top Dogs in America
- Nine Beneficial Dog Food Ingredients
- War on Fleas Calls for Strong Artillery
- Active Lives of Disabled Dogs
- Stretching Techniques for Dogs
- Mixed-breed Cats No Longer Outclassed
- Drug Recalls Put Spotlight on Cat Anesthesia Safety
- The Reasoning for Indoor Cats
- Why You Should Recycle Your Dog's Waste
- Cat Food Ingredients: The 4 Essential Groups
- Erase Your Cat's Carbon Footprint
- Pet Identification: The Best Care for Your Cat
- Amazing Stories of Lost and Found Dogs
- Traveling with Pets
- Tick Diseases On the Rise
- Racing Greyhounds Smile Big When They Find Adoptive Homes
- Healthy Hiking With Your Dog
- EPA Addresses Complaints About Flea and Tick Products
- Dog Breeds at Risk for Swallowing Nonfood Items
- The Future of Dog Spaying
- Natural and Organic Living is Important For Pets
- Read Your Dog's Body Language
- Exercise With Your Dog to Prevent Obesity
- Health Clues in Your Dog's Behavior
- Is Your 'Natural' Dog Food Truly Natural
- Vitamins and Minerals Your Dog Needs
- Selecting the Best Kibble for Your Dog
- Veterinary Research on Compulsive Behavior Could Benefit Dogs and People
- Canine Conduct - Sniffing and Whiffing
- Steve Dale and the Puppy Pros
- Westminster Dog Show Expert Shares Training Secrets
- Signs of Illness in Your Dog
- Canine Heart Disease - A Silent Killer
- Animal Books for Your Pet-Loving Friends and Relatives
Copyright © 2011 DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.