Summer is over and winter is coming. With the drop in temperature also comes winter safety concerns for your pets. The cold temperatures will make outdoor cats seek places to get warm and one of their favorite places is under the hood of cars or in the wheel well. When the vehicle is turned on the fan belt can cause significant harm or death. It is a good idea to bang on the hood prior to starting your car to try to scare any unsuspecting animals out.
If your pet (dog or cat) spends a large amount of time outside, especially at night it is important to provide a warm, dry shelter. This can be a dog crate or even just a box with blankets in it. The Treasure Valley can see some very cold temperatures and it is recommended to bring your pets inside if at all possible if the temperature is dropping below 20 degrees. Snow can be disorienting to both cats and dogs and there is a greater risk of them becoming lost. It is important to keep your pets close and not let them run too far off. This can especially be a concern when taking your pet to an unfamiliar area, like on a snow shoe trip. Also making sure your pets are microchipped or wearing ID tags can help them be returned home if found.
Anti freeze use is more prevalent in the colder temperatures and it is important to take extra care to make sure your pet does not have access to it. Any spills need to be cleaned up immediately and the bottle or any fluid should be disposed or stored in an area that is not accessible to any animals. If you think your pet may have ingested antifreeze you should have them seen by a veterinarian right away. Ice melt products can also be toxic to animals if ingested. Make sure to wipe your pet's feet and abdomen thoroughly after walks to make sure any chemicals are removed that may have been placed on the ground. If you use ice melt products at home it should be in an area that the pets are not walking through.