What you should know to keep your pets safe during winter weather

Published: Dec. 21, 2022 at 1:03 PM CST
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SIOUX CITY (KTIV) - With blizzard-like conditions and subzero temperatures expected in the coming days, there are a few precautions you can take to keep your pets safe during the winter.

“When it’s this dangerous with the temperatures, the best place for your pet is indoors with you. With the cold temperatures, people just like pets, some can tolerate the cold a little bit better than others,” said Kelly Erie, Public Relations and Volunteer Manager for Sioux City Humane Society.

Erie said to limit time outside, and when coming inside from walks be sure to wash the pads of their paws; with smaller animals, wash their belly. Road chemicals such as anti-freeze and road salt can be toxic to your animals.

Another warning about the cold, animals can also get frostbite and hypothermia.

If caring for an outside animal, Erie has some tips to keep them safe.

  • Provide shelter that faces away from wind and blowing snow
  • Shelter should be a couple of inches off of the ground
  • A flap in front of the shelter door.
  • Use hay, straw or other bedding material
  • Providing a heated water dish

Another tip. Some feral cats or other animals may seek shelter in a warm place, like under your vehicle’s hood. Erie said it’s best to bang on the hood or honk the horn prior to starting the car to ensure that the animals stay out of harm’s way.