Cold Weather Prep: Things to Consider

Now that October’s here, there’s no denying that the weather’s really starting to cool down. But, before the real ice hits, we suggest doing a little cold weather prep for your pets so everyone can stay safe and warm this winter.

• Inside is best – The obvious answer to avoiding cold weather dangers is to keep pets indoors but, at the very least, you must provide a shelter they can retreat to when winds whip and snow falls. It should be raised off the ground for added warmth and dryness, and beds and blankets to cozy up to are a wonderful addition. Be sure they have access to food and [thawed] water.
• Some coats need a boost – If you have an active pet that will need walks throughout the cold months, consider a coat or sweater to help keep them warm where their fur may fall short.
• Beware of salts – Some snow melting products will irritate paw pads if walked on and can affect pets’ mouths if licked. Even if you don’t see anything, chemicals can still be present so, before they come inside, wipe their feet off with a damp towel (bonus points if it’s a little warm!) Side note: There are pet-friendly snowmelt products, so seek those options for around your home.
• Beware of antifreeze – Antifreeze is deadly when ingested and what’s worse is it has a sweet scent and flavor, so pets have a hard time resisting a lick. Keep antifreeze out of everyone’s reach (children included) and be aware of leaks from your car, in winter and all year.
• Cats + cold weather – Sometimes cats will hide underneath cars, on tires, or even under the hood for warmth. During cold months, get in the habit of knocking on the hood of your car before you get in to let them know it’s time to move.
• Don’t be afraid to speak up – If you’re concerned about an animal you see outside, don’t be afraid to either help that pet yourself or tell their owner you’re worried for their well being in these frigid temperatures.

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