Experts are warning pet owners of the dangers a harsh winter can pose to their four-legged friends.
“They can get frostbite on their paws, that can be a very big problem for our pets being outside,” said Dr. Kris Park of the East Side Veterinary Clinic. “Just overall, the extreme temperatures are very dangerous for them.”
An easy place to start, said Alicia Wright with the Connecticut Humane Society, is by examining your surroundings.
“You also want to think about the roadways and your driveway,” said Wright. “There is a lot of salt out there. It's dangerous, so if you do take your pet for a walk down the street, you want to wash off their paws.”
Another simple solution is to safeguard winter supplies. Park said pet owners may not often think about anti-freeze poisoning, which poses a real threat.
“If they lick it, that can be extremely lethal,” said Park.
When it comes to time spent outside, experts emphasize the importance of knowing your breed. Animals of various sizes have different winter needs, and sometimes their fur isn't quite enough to keep them warm on walks.
“We recommend perhaps getting them to wear a coat; some people use booties for the pet’s paws,” said Wright.
Last but not least, both Wright and Park remind owners to treat pets like you would want to be treated yourself. If you're cold, chances are, so is your pet.