(WLNS) – Brr, it’s cold outside, which means your pets are cold too. With below zero temperatures moving in, pet owners should pause to check their pet’s paws for any cold weather injuries or damage.
Bringing them inside is the safest way to keep them warm and cozy, just like you. The Humane Society says your dog or cat is happiest and healthiest when kept indoors.
Temperatures are expected to drop this Valentine’s weekend to about 10-11 below zero. With the wind chill, mid-Michigan could see temperatures as low as 35 below zero.
If you can’t bring your pet inside or they are an outdoor pet, make sure to provide proper shelter.
Proper shelter includes a dry, draft-free shelter that is large enough to allow the dog to sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough to hold in his/her body heat. The floor should be raised a few inches off the ground and covered with cedar shavings or straw, says the Humane Society. The doorway should be covered with waterproof burlap or heavy plastic.
For outdoor pets, the Humane Society says they need more food in the winter to help keep them warm. It’s best to keep checking your pet’s food and water dishes to make sure the water is fresh and unfrozen. The Humane Society recommends using plastic food and water bowls during the winter in cold temperatures because your pet’s tongue could stick to metal or freeze.
Remember to keep your eyes open for pets outside without proper shelter. If you see a pet outside, call a local animal shelter at one of the numbers below or call 911.
Local animal shelters:
Jackson: Cascades Humane Society – 517-787-7387
Jackson: Jackson Animal Shelter – 517-788-4464
Lansing: Capital Area Humane Society 517-626-6060
Mason: Ingham County Animal Shelter: 517-676-8370
Horse owner safety information is also included in the Humane Society tips link above.