Posts Tagged ‘pet safety’


Winter is a time of year that we need to careful and prepare simple safety tips.  This year has been a particularly cold winter in so many places.  Here are a few tips to keep in mind.

Prepare your home and family:

  • Review and update your family emergency plan.  This is a great time to replenish your emergency supply kits, batteries, and emergency information.
  • Have extra blankets on hand.
  • Winterize your home, barn, and any other structures that provide shelter for your family, livestock, pets, or equipment.
  • Have a sufficient supply of heating fuel.
  • Insulate pipes and allow faucets to drip during the cold weather to avoid freezing.
  • Learn how to shut off water valves in case the pipes burst.
  • Move plants inside or cover with frost coverings or blankets.
  • Keep fire extinguishers full and on hand and make sure everyone in the house knows how to use them.
  • DO NOT bring heating devices into the house that are intended for outdoor use.  They can quickly produce carbon monoxide.

Prepare your pets:

  • Keep cats indoors during the cold weather.  Sometimes outdoor cats can sleep under the hoods of cars during the cold weather.  Be sure to check or tap on the hood before getting into your vehicle.
  • Don’t let your dog off leash on snow or ice (especially during a snow storm) – they can lose their sense of smell and this risks a chance of injury or they can become lost.  Make sure you have ID tags on them.
  • Be sure to thoroughly wipe off their stomachs and legs after coming in from the snow.  There can be dangerous substances like antifreeze that has become encrusted in ice.
  • Don’t shave your dog in winter.
  • Never leave your dog or cat alone in the car during cold weather.  A car can be like a refrigerator.
  • Make sure your faithful companion has a warm place to sleep with a cozy bed, warm blanket, or pillow.

Recognizing symptoms of exposure, seek medical attention if:

  • Confusion, dizziness, exhaustion and shivering are signs of hypothermia.
  • Gray, white, or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, or waxy skins are symptoms of frostbite.
  • In case of overexposure to freezing temperatures, remove wet clothing and immediately warm the body with a blanket or warm fluids.  Avoid caffeine or alcohol.

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I recently came across some important safety tips and simple steps to be assured that your pets will be taken care of in an emergency.  I wanted to pass this along.  Keep this information with your pet records and update when necessary.

Plan a safe place to take your pets in case of an emergency: 

  • Keep a list of pet friendly motels or hotels in your immediate area.  Find out what their policies are in accepting pets and if there are any restrictions.  Here’s a website for pet friendly motels/hotels in the US:
  • Prepare a list of veterinarians and boarding facilities that might be able to shelter animals in case of an emergency.
  • Put together a list of friends, neighbors, and family members that might be able to take your pets.
  • Contact local animal shelters and rescues in your area and find out if they would take in animals if other facilities were full.

Put together a portable pet disaster/emergency kit:

I always have one of these kits ready to go when I travel with my pets.  Remember to keep everything updated on a regular basis and make sure that you rotate pet food and water. 

  • Pet beds and toys.
  • Current photos of your animals in case they get lost.
  • Veterinary records, any medications, and first aid kit stored in a waterproof container.
  • Information on feeding, medicines, name and telephone number of Vet, and any behavior problems.
  • Carriers and leashes to safely transport your animals.
  • Food, bottled water, bowls, and cat litter/pan.

When disaster approaches:

  • Make sure that ALL pets have current ID tags and collars securely fastened.
  • You can attach temporary ID tags with any other information, such as Vet or temporary boarder.
  • Call ahead and make sure that there are arrangements available for your pets at your designated location.
  • Check and make sure that your portable disaster/emergency kit is ready to go at any given notice.
  • Bring all pets inside the house.  You won’t then have to search for them when you have to leave in a hurry.

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Don’t forget to have your own emergency kit ready to go as well.  Talk to your family about how and where you would meet in case of an emergency or disaster.