December 4, 2021
As the cold weather & snow return, there are a few things to keep in mind to help keep your dogs and cats safe. Remember, they have spent the last few months in a different climate so it will take a while for them to acclimate (including any haircoat and paw pad changes).
– Provide adequate shelter and warmth. Make sure your pets can get out of the cold by getting into the house through a pet door or providing a warm covered space for them. Sometimes, even a garage can get too cold.
– Do not leave them outside or in a cold space for very long because dogs and cats can get frostbite in severe conditions.
– Be careful with heating pads or heat lamps as dogs and cats can become burned
– Make sure outdoor (or even those in a garage or shop) water dishes are refreshed often so they don’t freeze
– Your pet may not be getting as much outdoor time or exercise so provide plenty of toys and things to do inside, especially if they’re being left alone.
When out on an adventure
– Protect those paws! Snow and ice can be very abrasive for the paw pads, nail beds, and skin between the pads, especially at the beginning of the season. Start with short trips outside to allow your pet’s pads time to adjust. You may also consider using a boot as added protection.
– Keep in mind that deep snow is very hard to navigate for a dog who is sinking through the top layer and then bounding through it. They may become tired more quickly than usual or it could lead to an injury if they are overdoing it.
– Bring extra water and treats. Some streams or lakes that are normally a source of fresh water may be frozen so be sure to have extra water for your four legged friend.
– Make sure to abide by all leash laws wherever you are going. Whether it’s on a walk within Bend or on a trail in the mountains, there may be leash rules that you need to follow in order to keep your pet or others recreating safe.
– Don’t leave your pet in a cold car unattended.
It’s always fun seeing our pets outside enjoying the snow. Stay safe and please contact us at Pawtown Veterinary Care if you have any questions!