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Winter Weather Care Tips For Pets

Winter Weather Care Tips For Pets

Posted by Grange Co-op on 2nd Feb 2022

The coldest season is upon us, so if you’re a pet owner, you’ll be making preparations to keep your animals safe and warm in winter weather.

Knowing that you’ve done all you can to keep your furry companions happy this season means that you can get on with your everyday tasks with total peace of mind.

From ensuring they have fresh food and water to exercising them indoors, our pet protection tips will ensure your animals are safe and well cared for this winter.

1. Bring Outdoor Animals In

If you have animals that normally live outside, consider bringing them indoors during cold weather. If they’re small animals like dogs, this could mean allowing them access to your house.

Larger livestock like cattle, sheep, pigs and goats will benefit from an enclosed stable or pen where they can shelter from the elements. It should be dry and free from drafts with enough space for them to stand and lie down but cozy enough to retain their body heat.

2. Ensure Access to Food and Water

If you can’t bring your pets indoors or if their outside accommodation isn’t heated, you must make sure they have access to drinking water that won’t freeze. You can do this by fitting a water tank heater or providing your pet with a heated water bowl. Check out the Farm Innovators Green Heated Pet Bowl, which is ideal for this very scenario.

This spacious bowl is perfect for large dogs, and it even comes with an “anti-chew” cord protector to ensure durability and safety. It stops water from freezing in cold temperatures. It is also thermostatically controlled, so it only operates when needed, making it thoroughly efficient and saving wear and tear.

You should also make sure that food is placed in a dry location to avoid being destroyed by moisture and access is not blocked by snow or storm debris.

3. Keep Pets Free of Chemicals

If you use substances such as salt or chemicals to make outdoor surfaces safer to walk on or to melt ice and snow, spare a thought for animal safety.

Keep your pets away from areas where these substances have been used, and be sure to wipe their paws thoroughly if they do venture out. Chemicals and salt can irritate their paws and can be harmful if ingested when your pet licks itself clean.

Be extra careful when using antifreeze, which is poisonous to animals (and humans). Keep it out of your pets’ way and clear up any spills immediately.

4. Check Vehicles Before Using Them

If you have outdoor cats, make sure you check under the hood before you start the ignition. Cats seek out warm places, so it’s second nature to them to curl up next to a warm engine. Also check wheel arches in case they have taken refuge there.

5. Keep Your Pet Warm While Exercising

Some animals will benefit from an extra layer when they venture outside for exercise during the winter months.

Photo credit: Andreas Schmolmueller on Pexels

Keep your dog warm and dry with a water and windproof coat. Check out our selection in-store or online. If your horse is older, then it might also enjoy wearing a horse blanket in cold and wet weather. You'll find many types available at Grange Co-op, with features such as temperature control, moisture wicking and waterproofing. This may also be true if it’s a breed that has a fine coat and skin. Avoid blankets with hoods that can obscure your horse’s vision or rub the eyeball, which can cause an ulcer.

6. Make Sure Your Pet Wears a Collar

It’s more important than ever for your pet to wear a collar with an ID tag during winter weather. If they do wander off, it will be harder for them to find their way home by themselves in harsh weather. So make sure their collar and tag are easily identifiable and in good condition.

7. Keep Humidity Levels Raised

If your pet lives in your house with you, keep your home humid. That’s because when your pet continually comes out of a cold outdoor environment into a hot, dry home, their skin can become irritated easily.

Make sure you dry your pet thoroughly with a towel when they come in too, paying special attention to the feet and between the toes to prevent skin irritation.

8. Keep Bathing to a Minimum

Know how to care for your pet’s skin during winter weather. It’s best not to bathe them too often to prevent stripping their skin of its natural protective oils. This is more relevant than ever during cold, dry weather.

9. Choose Indoor Exercise

Consider letting your dog exercise indoors if outside conditions are too harsh. Start by understanding how much exercise your dog needs according to its breed.

You can encourage your dog to run up and down the stairs using a toy as an incentive.

If you have the space, set up an indoor obstacle course. Hold up a hula hoop for it to jump through, or create a tunnel using sheets draped across chairs.

If you have a treadmill, you can also gently encourage your dog to use it. Start with the lowest speed and offer treats while your dog is on the treadmill. Gradually increase the speed while your dog gets used to it.

10. Keep Your Pet’s Health Appointments

Even when it’s cold outside, it’s important to keep up with your pet’s regular exams and vaccines. This means that any health issues can be detected early on and are less likely to develop into something serious, which you won’t want to be dealing with in cold winter weather.

Know More About Heated Water Bowls to Keep Your Pet Healthy This Winter

In cold weather, keep pets safe, warm and healthy by taking these few simple measures. All it takes is a little preparation and forethought to ensure that your furry friends make it safely through the winter!

For our heated pet bowls and other pet supplies to keep your animal companions happy this winter, check out our complete range. And don’t forget to  contact us if you need to know more about any of our products or how to find our stores!