Protecting Your Pets in the Winter

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Dr. Jyl is in the studio with Bethany with tips on how to protect your pets in the winter; many people do not realize the harmful effects the harsh weather can have on their pets.

FIVE TIPS

  • Leave your dog's fur longer during the winter to keep them warm. If you have a puppy, kitten, or a short hair breed pet, consider purchasing a coat or sweater to cover their back and underside fleece is a great option!
  • PROTECT THOSE PAWS! The cold snow and ice can be a pain in the paw. Make sure to wash and completely dry your pet's paws after time outside (especially if they came in contact with any salt or chemical de-icer). Look out for snow and encrusted ice that can cause cracked, bleeding paws. If you notice any bleeding, call your veterinarian. Petroleum jelly or MUSHERS WAX is a safe way to protect those paws -- you can also look into dog boots.
  • In the cold winter, your pet will burn more calories to keep warm. If your pet exercises outdoors a lot, think about increasing their food intake by a little bit. You should be able to feel, but not see, your pet's ribs.
  • Keeping walkways walkable and driveways drivable in the winter often requires the use of salt or chemical de-icers which are poisonous to pets. Try to avoid contact with de-icers when with your pet and wipe them down with a wet to remove any chemicals they could've come in contact with. Remember, if you're putting antifreeze in your car, use a pet-friendly or propylene glycol option. (Antifreeze toxicity can cost pet owners up to $2000.)
  • Just like when it's hot out, don't leave your pet in your car when it's particularly cold out. Your car can act like a refrigerator as it holds in the cold. When in doubt, leave your pet at home when you know you'll have to leave them unattended in the car.
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