Looking after our animal friends during the cold weather

Caring for our companion animals

We must look after our companion animals especially during the colder months. Keeping them safe, protected and happy can be challenging so here are a few tips which may help.

Like us all animals can feel cold, as they feel heat. Keep cats and dogs in during the colder months. It’s believed that they are more resilient than people to cold weather because of their fur, but that’s untrue. They too are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should be kept inside.

Animals who live outside should be brought in if temperatures drop below 20 Fahrenheit. Cats especially should always have easy access back into their home e.g. a cat flap.

Ensure your animal has been microchipped. Sadly, thousands of companion animals go missing, get stolen or lost every year. Having them microchipped helps increase the chances of them getting back home to you. Veterinary practices can scan for a microchip and if the guardians contact details are up to date the more likely they will be able to help reunite you back safely with your loved one.

Water bowls can freeze quickly, so make sure there is always fresh water available.

When out on walks with a dog always keep them on a lead to avoid them running off to a nearby lake which could be frozen and easy to break through.

When you get home from those walks always check paws for any salt grit which might be on them. Clean them all and make sure they are dried off, so they don’t get cold. Antifreeze can be fatal so ensure that any bottle you may have is safely stored away and away from them. Salt and chemicals can make them sick so always buy nontoxic alternatives.

One way to tell your dog’s temperature is to feel their ears, if they feel cold around the edges especially its time to take him inside and cover him in a blanket.

Their beds need to be soft, comfortable and kept away from any drafts.

As responsible guardians we must protect our beloved animal family members.

Many animals can be particularly susceptible to the elements and never let cats and dogs go outdoors unsupervised as it could be dangerous.

Look out for all animals during the severe weather especially birds, many steel water bowels could freeze up and cause their tongues can stick to the metal.

If you are every worried or concerned about an animal always call a vet for advice and help and immediate assistance.