Pets and Polar Vortex 2019: Five Safety Essentials - The Trupanion Blog
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Pets and Polar Vortex 2019: Five Safety Essentials

Pets and polar vortex 2019- five safety essentials for your furry friend.

Pet safety is an utmost concern every winter and it seems that each year the U.S. and Canada is faced with extreme weather. As households prepare for the next round of extended, cold winter storms, we wanted to provide safety essentials for pets and polar vortex 2019.  Moreover, as freezing temperatures and ice storms are set to hit the East Coast, what does that mean for our furry friends? Check out our five tips to ensure safety for your pets during this extreme polar vortex 2019 winter storm.

Pets and polar vortex 2019: five important safety measures to take during freezing winter

Pets and polar vortex 2019 : Tip 1 - Keep pets safe by providing appropriate clothing and keeping them dry.

Limit time outdoors

With freezing temperatures, it is increasingly important to limit time outdoors. “Even with pets that enjoy being outside in the winter weather, it is important to limit extended activity with heavy winter storms,” cites on-site Trupanion pet program manager, J. Marmol. Consider interactive play and enrichment toys to supplement the outside play time during the polar vortex.

Layer on clothes

Staying warm is an important factor during this winter storm freeze. Each pet is different, but keeping layers on your pet will help insulate their body heat. In contrast, make sure to de-layer as you move back inside to avoid over-heating your furry friend.

Hydrate and keep dry

Make sure your pet is staying well hydrated and is able to keep dry. For example, if you are outside for a walk, make sure your pets are properly dried off once you get inside. Indeed, by not keeping your pets dry you run the risk of them becoming sick.

Exposure is key

Exposure is a key component to proper pet safety. “Your pet’s coat provides some insulation in cold weather when dry, although dogs and cats with short hair have less protection,” states on-site Trupanion veterinarian, Dr. Sarah Nold. “With cold weather, it is usually not a matter of what is too cold, but how long they are exposed to it. In other words, the short amount of time to go outside “to use the bathroom” is unlikely to be sufficient to harm them.”

Read the signs

It’s all about reading the signs and understanding your pet. “This is complicated by the fact that, similar to us, each pet will tolerate cold weather to a different degree. Also, you have to consider other factors such as age, overall health, coat thickness, and body condition. For example, the northern breeds of dogs tend to do better because of their thick undercoat,” points out Dr. Nold.

Certainly, by being able to identify the signs of hypothermia in your pet can help to ensure their health and safety. Here are four signs of hypothermia to watch out for –

Four signs of hypothermia

  • Excessive shivering
  • Low body temperature
  • Slow movements
  • Dullness

Definitely seek veterinary care immediately if your pet is experiencing any signs of hypothermia.

Pet travel in winter weather

Pets and polar vortex 2019 - tip - Make a plan for safety during winter storms and seek veterinary care if needed.

When traveling with your pet, always make sure to pack extra supplies. For instance, items like towels, blankets, bedding, and jackets could come in handy when you are traveling by car or on a road trip with your pet.

Also, be mindful of the temperature in the car as well. “Just as cars can warm up quickly in hot weather, your car can rapidly cool down in cold weather. It’s best to never leave your pet in the car. For instance, if you are going somewhere your pet can’t come with you, it is better to leave your pet at home, with a friend, or at a boarding facility,” states Dr. Nold.

Best practices for senior and young pets in freezing weather

It is best to be mindful of your senior and young pets in the colder temperatures. “Very young dogs (under six months of age), elderly dogs, small dogs, and those already in poor health are going to be affected by the cold weather sooner, ” says Dr. Nold.

For this reason, prepare and make a plan when you are out in cold weather, as well as monitor your pets with compromising health. Likewise, if you are concerned or notice a change in health or behavior, seek veterinary care.

Pets and Polar Vortex 2019: keeping pets warm in winter

Pets and polar vortex 2019 - Tip - Limit time outdoors and stay hydrated. Take the time to get some rest and relaxation inside with your furry friends.

The safety of our pets and the polar vortex 2019 is incredibly important as we move more into the winter seasons. Take extra care by proving appropriate clothing, hydration, and warmth, in order to ensure a safe winter season for your furry friend. In turn, the polar vortex 2019 gives you the opportunity to enjoy some rest and relaxation inside with your furry friends.

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