Keep pets safe & warm as winter sets in

"Let's go for a walk" by sermoa, CC BY-SA 2.0

Fort Wayne, IN (WOWO): Winter in Indiana can be beautiful, and it’s important to make sure that pets are prepared for the colder weather ahead. WOWO News has some tips to make sure your furry friends thrive throughout the winter.

  • Pet proof your home. Pets spend more time indoors during the winter months.
  • Secure all space heaters and use them with caution around your pets. Do not leave pets unattended with space heaters at any time.
  • Prepare for winter storms by making sure you have at least five days of food and water.
  • Identify pets with a microchip or identification tag. Pets may become lost during the winter because snow and ice can obscure scents that they use to identify the way home.
  • Make sure all microchips and ID tags have your current information on them.
  • Never leave pets in a car unattended. Temperatures in a parked car drop quickly and can rapidly chill pets to dangerous levels.
  • Pets are at risk for frostbite and hypothermia and should never be left outside for extended periods in frigid temperatures.
  • Check paws after a walk for cracked pads, bleeding or impacted snow and ice.
  • During walks, your dogs paws, legs and belly may pick up de-icers, anti-freeze or other potentially harmful chemicals. Be sure to wipe down or wash your pet to mitigate the risk of poisoning.
  • Keep your dog away from ice covered ponds, creeks or other waterways. The ice may not be strong enough to support your dog’s weight.
  • Outdoor and feral cats may seek shelter in very cold weather under your car’s hood. Check your car and make noise by tapping on the hood or honking the horn before starting your vehicle.

If you see pets that are left outdoors, are distressed or appear to need help, you’re encouraged to contact the Allen County SPCA at (260) 744-0454 or Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control at (260) 427-1244.

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