Weather warning to pet owners as temperatures plummet

Emergency service for pets, Vets now, is preparing for a sustained busy period as the Met Office today issued further snow, ice and wind weather warnings for much of the UK over the next three days.

Veterinarians In emergency hospitals and clinics across the country, the number of cold weather-related cases has increased as January temperatures drop due to the recent adverse weather conditions such as freezing, fog, snow and high winds that affect our pets.

Today’s Met Office warnings come under a new caution a new beast from the east could snow extremely cold and heavily within 14 days.

Extreme wintry weather is a threat to our pets. Dogs, cats, rabbits and other small pets are at risk in bad weather. Common problems that emergency vets will address include: cats and dogs suffer from frostbite on their paws, short-nosed dogs and pets who have injuries from icy and slippery surfaces, have difficulty breathing, or injuries from snow-covered hazards such as rocks.

Dave Leicester, Head of Telemedicine at Vets Now, who is responsible for a team of experienced veterinarians at Vets Now Video veterinarian Service said, “When the weather changes, pets and their owners need us more than ever. Our veterinary teams across the country are working hard and making additional preparations for the cold snap that is still forecast across much of the UK. ”

Dave added, “Heavy snow and freezing temperatures pose a serious threat to your pet. While we are always here to provide the best possible care for your pets in an emergency, we’d like to help you in any way we can to keep them from doing so these emergencies arise in the first place. We have put out some advice to help you keep your pet safe and prevent unwanted illness or injury. It’s important that you know what to do when faced with a pet emergency, especially if it’s after business hours and your veterinarian is closed. “

Vets Now has produced a few helpful advice to pet owners to keep your pet safe and warm when temperatures continue to drop

1. If you are too cold, your pet is too cold

Keep your pets indoors, especially overnight, when the temperature drops, otherwise there is a risk of frostbite or hypothermia. If your pet shows any signs of this, contact your veterinarian right away. Also, keep in mind that indoor temperatures can drop too. When you are not there, make sure that the temperatures in your house can never drop below a reasonable level (around 20 ° C).

2. Take shorter, more frequent walks

It is worth taking your dog on shorter, more frequent walks to protect him from weather-related health risks.

3. Wash and dry your pet’s feet after walks

Salt and chemicals used to grind streets and sidewalks can irritate your pet’s upholstery, especially if they have small cracks or redness between their toes. Always wipe your paws with a cloth and warm water when you get home.

4. Don’t let your pet fall victim to the antifreeze

Antifreeze poisoning is a major cold spell hazard, especially if it leaks out of a car’s radiator or hits the floor while being sprayed on frozen car windows. Remove ice from vehicles with an old-fashioned scraper, keep antifreeze containers closed, and clean up spills quickly as even small amounts can be fatal.

5. Keep an eye on your car

Cats allowed outside during cold spells can try relaxing with a warm vehicle engine. Check under your car and slap the hood before starting the engine to make sure you don’t have a hitchhiker for cats.

6. Switch to the breed of your pet

Just like humans, some pets like husky dogs and Persians are more tolerant of cold weather than others. Make sure you do your homework on your breed. For example, Dobermans, Chihuahuas and Great Danes need extra protection in the cold. Short-nosed pets are also at greater risk from extreme temperatures because of inherited breathing difficulties.

7. Consider a sweater or coat

It is a myth that dogs and cats are more resistant to the cold just because they have fur. Even long haired pets are at risk in cold weather. Put a dry sweater on your pet before going outside and always take spare parts with you in case it gets wet.



8. Make sure your pet is wearing a collar and has a microchip

Pets are at greater risk of getting lost and orienting themselves in snow or blizzard conditions. Make sure your dog or cat’s identification tag and microchip details are current and relevant.



9. Beware of heat stroke

Believe it or not short-nosed dogsin particular, there is a risk of suffering heatstroke when they train vigorously in sub-zero temperatures and then settle in a warm house.



10. Avoid icy lakes and ponds

Avoid frozen water. There is no guarantee that it will support your pet’s weight. If your dog or cat falls through ice it can be fatal.



11. Feed your pets well

Pets that spend long periods of time outdoors may need more calories in winter to produce enough energy to keep them warm. Talk to your veterinarian about your pet’s nutritional needs during the day. But Don’t overfeed them.



12. Watch out for icy steps, streets, and sidewalks

Older pets, especially those with arthritis or mobility problems, are at risk of slipping and injuring themselves on slippery surfaces, especially steps or when getting in or out of vehicles.



13. Make sure your pet has access to fresh water

It’s normal, but you should regularly check your pet’s water bowl and refill it if it’s low. Few animals can survive long without hydration, especially in extreme temperatures. You should also be careful not to freeze your pet’s water bowl.



14. Beware of snow-covered dangers

Our emergency vets have treated pets that have been injured by falling into snow-covered potholes or resting on snow-covered rocks and steps.



15. Be prepared for cold weather

If the weather forecasts predict an extreme cold snap or snow and blizzards, make sure you have one Emergency plan for pets in place. This includes stocking up on groceries and prescription drugs, knowing who to call in an emergency and how to travel to the vet in an emergency.

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