WOODLAND – Pet owners are urged to bring animals indoors during this frigid weather. Pets left outside are at risk of hypothermia, frostbite and death.
If you are unable to bring your pet inside, the Animal Welfare Council has bales of straw and sturdy insulated dog houses available to support outdoor pets. For more information about obtaining straw and dog houses, call 814-857-5282.
The location of the Animal Welfare Council/Allegheny Spay & Neuter Clinic is 1380 Shawville Hwy. in Woodland (beside the Woodland Post Office).
Pet owners are urged to take extra precautions during winter months. These tips will help to ensure the safety of companion animals.
According to the Humane Society of the United States, you can help your pets remain happy and healthy during the colder months by following these simple guidelines.
- Don’t leave dogs outdoors when the temperature drops. No matter what the temperature, wind chill can threaten a pet’s life. A dog or cat is happiest and healthiest when kept indoors.
If your dog is an outdoor dog, however, it must be protected by a dry, draft-free doghouse that is large enough to allow the dog to sit and lie down comfortably, but small enough to hold in its body heat.
The floor should be raised a few inches off the ground and covered with cedar shavings or straw, not a blanket, which can absorb moisture and freeze. The house should be turned to face away from the wind, and the doorway should be covered with waterproof burlap or heavy plastic.
- Pets that spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the winter because keeping warm depletes energy. Routinely check your pet’s water dish to make certain the water is fresh and unfrozen.
Use plastic food and water bowls rather than metal; when the temperature is low, your pet’s tongue can stick and freeze to metal.
Be careful with cars and trucks. Warm engines in parked vehicles attract cats and small wildlife that may crawl up under the hood to get warm. To avoid injuring any hidden animals, bang on you vehicle’s hood to scare them away before starting your engine.
- The salt and other chemicals used to melt snow and ice can irritate the pads of your pet’s feet. Wipe all paws with a damp towel before your pet licks them and irritates his/her mouth.
Antifreeze is a deadly poison, but it has a sweet taste that may attract animals and children. Wipe up spills and store antifreeze out of reach. Better yet, use antifreeze-coolant made with propylene glycol; if swallowed in small amounts, it will not hurt pets, wildlife, or your family.
- Dogs and cats are social animals that crave human companionship. Your animal companions deserve to live indoors with you and your family if possible.
The Animal Welfare Council is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization formed in 2006 by a group of individuals who share concern and passion for animals in the community and strive to fulfill the needs of local animals and their owners. Donations are being accepted to help with the purchase of straw and materials to build the dog houses.
For more information about the Animal Welfare Council or the Allegheny Spay and Neuter Clinic, call 814-857-5282.