As the cooler months set in, it is time to make sure your pets are kept safe, warm and healthy this winter. Here are a few tips to help you care for your pet this winter.
Offer a kitty tray for your cat if they become more reluctant to head outside and get their paws wet.
If you have a fire, use a fire guard. Be sure to avoid leaving open flames in an area where your pet can get to it.
Don’t leave the oven warming drawer open in the kitchen - cats have a good tendency to seek out the warmth.
Make sure your pet’s bed is in a warm spot away from any drafts.
Check paws regularly and dry off after outside time.
Don’t leave your dog in the car. Just as heat in summer can kill, cold cars in winter can pose a threat too.
Check wheel arches and under the hood of your car because animals will seek out a warm place to snooze.
If you use antifreeze, be sure to put it away and clean up any spills. Ingestion of antifreeze can cause kidney failure.
Make sure kennels and runs are free from drafts and not facing into the prevailing wind.
Ensure your pets have bedding, whether that is dry blankets or hay.
Offer coats and jackets on the really bitter days or make sure shelter is available.
Provide extra feed to your pets to help them maintain their healthy weight into spring.
In the cooler areas of New Zealand, be sure to check water bowls and troughs for ice. Break ice so your pets can drink.
Keep an eye on hooves and watch for rain scald or mud fever in horses and ponies.