Winter Pet Safety Tips
Snow, sleet, ice, and wind, there’s a lot to prepare for when it comes to winter weather! Just like we’re affected by the cold, our dogs are too. Here are a few simple measures you can take to make sure your dog stays happy and healthy throughout the winter.
Limit Dog's Time Outside
Dogs can suffer from frostbite, especially on delicate earflaps and tail tips. In extreme cold, it’s a good idea to keep dogs inside, with the exception of the heavy-coated northern breeds that thrive in low temperatures. If it’s not possible to keep the dogs indoors, be aware of the major signs of frostbite, which include skin that appears white or blue.
Even a big fuzzy dog that lives indoors will need some time to acclimate to freezing temperatures. Short romps outside will help your dog’s body get used to the change in the weather. Keep indoor activities fun with ideas you can find online.
Bundle Your Dog Up
Sure, most dogs have their own coat, but you wouldn’t want to go out in a blizzard in a light spring jacket. Make sure small, delicate, and short-haired dogs, even large ones like Greyhounds, have an appropriate winter wardrobe. Bonus: You can have fun dressing them up!
Consider Your Dog's Age
Where climate is concerned, age is more than a number. Like humans, very young and very old dogs have a hard time regulating body temperature, so they have more extreme reactions to changes in weather. Romps in the snow may be too much for their more delicate constitutions. Keep the oldsters and the puppies indoors as much as possible.
Beware of Antifreeze
As little as a teaspoon of antifreeze can cause kidney failure. Be alert to the signs that your dog has swallowed some of it, which include drooling, vomiting, seizures, excessive thirst, panting, lethargy, and a drunken appearance. If you think your dog has ingested antifreeze, it’s important to get to a vet as soon as possible. Even if you keep your antifreeze safely tucked away, there is still a danger from residue in the streets. Most antifreeze is green ethylene glycol, but it comes in several different colors. So watch where your dog is sniffing.
Pet Safety Tips provided by the AKC.