- Be sure to provide your pet with plenty of fresh water and shelter from the cold. Check the water dish often to make sure the water is fresh and unfrozen.
- Outdoor pets need additional food in the winter because keeping warm depletes energy.
- No matter what the temperature, wind chill can threaten a pet’s life. Try to provide a dry, draft-free doghouse large enough for your dog to maneuver comfortably but small enough to hold in body heat. (Manufactured houses will list the size pet for which the house was designed.) Raise the floor a few inches off of the ground and cover with cedar shavings or straw. Turn the house to face away from the wind and cover the doorway with a rug or waterproof burlap. Don’t forget about outdoor cats! They need to be able to get into shelter such as their own house, a barn or other outbuilding.
- The warm engines of cars attract cats and small wildlife. Bang on the car’s hood to scare them away before starting your engine.
- Antifreeze has a sweet taste that attracts animals. It is deadly to pets. Wipe up any spills immediately. Store it and all household chemicals away from pets. If you suspect your pet has consumed antifreeze, chemicals or poison, call our office immediately. If you cannot reach Dr. Hale, contact the Emergency Veterinary Clinic of Southwest Missouri which is located in Springfield (417/890-1600). Quick attention to this situation is critical.
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