Pet Owners – Cold Weather Dangers – Snohomish North Counties
Colder weather is on the way for Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties. Here are some important guidelines to keep your pets safe, dry and healthy this Winter.
- Don’t leave animals outdoors for extended periods of time. Shorthaired, very young and very old animals are extremely susceptible to the elements including rain, sleet, snow and wind.
- If you must leave an animal outdoors, the animal must be protected by a dry, draft-free shelter that is large enough for the animal to sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough to hold in his/her body heat. The shelter should be turned to face away from the wind and raised a few inches off the ground.
- Some local Humane Societies have limited numbers of free doghouses available to pets of residents in need. Check your local society for availability. The societies also welcome donations of new or used dog houses for the program.
- Pets that spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the Winter because keeping warm depletes the animal’s energy. Routinely check your pets water dish to make sure the water does not freeze.
- Livestock animals needs extra feed, hay and a source for water. Wind and rain proof jackets or blankets should be provided for horses, goats and other animals at risk in the elements. All outdoor livestock should have access to a dry, draft-free shelter.
- Warm engines in parked cars can attract cats and small wildlife that crawl up under the hood to stay warm. Before starting your car, bang on the hood to scare any animals away.
- Salt and other chemicals used to melt snow and ice can irritate the pads of your pets feet. Wipe your animals feet off with a damp cloth after walks or outdoor exercise.
- Antifreeze is a deadly poison, but has a sweet taste that attracts animals. Wipe up spills and store antifreeze out of reach of all domestic and wild animals.