AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)- As it finally feels like winter in the CSRA, pets are feeling it too, especially if they live outside.
“It’s just too cold for them to be outside,” said Cherish Danforth, who manages Graced Kennels in Augusta. “A lot of them will pass away in weather like this.”
Danforth said if it’s too cold for you to be outside, it’s too cold for your pets, too.
“So 40 degrees is definitely a time where dogs should start just going outside, us[ing] the restroom, com[ing] back in,” she said.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, the amount of hair a dog has dosen’t make much of a difference.
While long-haired dogs may be more tolerant, they still are at risk in cold weather. Just like people, dogs are susceptible to hypothermia and frostbite.
“Long-haired dogs are going to be just like short-haired dogs,” Danforth said. “I mean they can stand it a little bit better, but not really because they’re not equipped to handle it for an extended period of time. They’re not used to that weather.”
But if you must leave your dogs outside, make sure they have some shelter.
“Even the doggie door on a dog house, [make ]sure it’s not facing the wind, so the wind’s not blowing in or they have a dog flap,” Danforth said.
Cats also face risks during cold weather.
“Your cats are a little bit different because they tend to be able to get into smaller spaces, but that can also make it dangerous for them as well because they can get in some spaces that they really shouldn’t be in, like your vehicles and stuff like that,” Danforth said.
She also said it’s a good idea to blow your horn before starting the ignition to make sure no cats are finding shelter under your hood.
If you see homeless animals that don’t have access to shelter, you should report it to your local animal services.
Graced Kennels is offering 50 percent off on baths this winter as it gets too cold for animals to stay outside.