I’m watching The Weather Channel, waiting for the snow to reach us here in Canton, Ohio, and realizing that there is snow deep into the south, where they are not quite as used to it as we are. So, a few cold weather tips for you and your dog:
1. Bring your dog inside if at all possible.
2. If the dog must stay outside, provide straw or blankets and a shelter where s/he can get out of the wind.
3. Check the water dish often to make sure it’s not frozen over.
4. Check your dog’s paws for ice balls between the toes. They can cause pain if not removed.
5. Stay off the roads unless you absolutely have to go out. As the snow begins to melt in the sunshine, it will run-off into the streets and freeze over when the sun goes down, creating black ice.
6. Don’t use your oven, fire pit, or candles to keep your house warm.
7. If you have to turn to an alternate heat source like a space heater or fireplace, watch for carbon monoxide poisoning. Early symptoms are headache, flu-like feeling, dizziness, and confusion. If you start experiencing these symptoms, go outside immediately and take your dog with you.
8. If your power is out, snuggle with your dog. It will keep both of you warm. Put blankets both under and over you, and keep your head and feet covered. Dress in loose layers – air will be trapped in between the layers and will keep you warmer. It’s the same way a double coat works on a dog.
9. If you haven’t checked already, see if your town has a warming center open. Ask if they accept pets, and don’t forget your mask!
10. Check on your neighbors, particularly if they are elderly or impaired. Be sure they are able to keep their pets safe, too.
Stay warm. Stay safe. Stay home.
Until next time,
Good day, and good dog!