The cold winter months bring many hazards for our pets, not limited to the chilly temperatures! Follow these tips from a Richmond Hill veterinarian to keep your pet safe this winter.

Bring Your Pet Inside

Never leave your pet outside for extended periods of time when it’s cold out. Even if they want to go out and play in the snow, limit their time in the cold and have them come back in every once in a while to warm up. You’ll be reducing or eliminating all kinds of risks, from frostbite to chemicals to getting lost in a snowstorm.

Beware of Antifreeze

In the winter, we put antifreeze in our cars. Unfortunately, antifreeze contains ethylene glycol, a sweet-tasting alcoholic substance that is lethal to pets. Keep antifreeze stored safely away where your pet can’t get to it, and clean up any spills immediately. Rush your pet to your animal hospital as soon as possible if he’s ingested antifreeze or any other product containing ethylene glycol.

Wipe Your Pet Off

When your pet comes in from the great outdoors, wipe of his body, legs, and paws with a soft cloth. This will remove road salt, de-icer chemicals, antifreeze, and any foreign objects your pet may have on his body. Dry him off and let him rest on a comfy pet bed.

Check Your Car

During the chillier months, cats tend to crawl up inside the engine compartment of cars, seeking warmth. If the car is started with the cat still inside, serious injury or death could result. It’s a good safety measure to slap the hood of your car a few times before getting in. This will startle any cats hiding inside and give them a chance to run away.

Dress Your Pet Up

We aren’t the only ones who can dress for the occasion. Put a sweater, coat, or boots designed for pets onto your furry companion, especially if they’re a short-haired breed or otherwise especially susceptible to the cold. Ask your Richmond Hill veterinarian for a recommendation on good animal clothing for your pet.