AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - With a cat suffering from injuries from a car engine a few weeks ago and a dog being brought in after drinking antifreeze yesterday, veterinarians are urging owners to take caution when it comes to caring for their pets this winter.
Most everyone knows the basics when it comes to caring for your pets in the colder months. However, some veterinarians say there are more pet owners should be aware of.
“With the cold weather, people put ice melt solutions down to prevent slippage of people, and these are caustic chemicals that can burn the pad of the feet of our pets or animals. If they’re not washed off appropriately, we can get injuries there that have to been seen and medicated. Also, water is a run-off it does contaminate the water supply sometimes, and we’ve seen animals come in with gastrousus, with vomiting and diarrhea after they maybe drank some of the water that had some of these melting chemicals put into or run into,” said Dr. Bret Whitten, a veterinarian at Amarillo Veterinarian Clinic.
As vets see more issues with what animals are getting into and drinking, Amarillo Animal Management and welfare stress the impact frigid temperatures can have on animals, especially overnight.
“Hypothermia can be an issue if they don’t have adequate shelter with severe temps. We want to remind people not to use blankets inside dog houses. What happens is they get wet, they get moisture in there, they freeze, and that can actually put the animals more at risk of hypothermia than not having a blanket at all,” said Christy Fischer, assistant manager of Amarillo Animal Management and Welfare.
The city of Amarillo says it is required that all animals have adequate shelter and water at all times, water that is not frozen.
“We hear a lot, well my dog has a fur coat. Well that may be true, but even if you or I had a winter coat on, when it’s 20 degrees outside or 10 degrees with the wind chill, standing outside with our winter coat on is not going to be enough to keep us warm or to help us maintain our body temperature,” said Fischer.