• How To Care For Pets In The Cold Weather

    Posted on January 6th, 2014
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    Cold weather tips all pet owners need to know.

    The east coast of the nation is experiencing extreme cold weather conditions. During these conditions it is vital to make sure your pets are inside and warm.

    Clear The Air would like to share some cold weather tips from the Humane Society:

    • Keep pets indoors and warm – Don’t leave dogs or cats outdoors when the temperature drops. Regardless of the season, short-haired, very young, or old dogs and all cats should never be left outside without supervision. Dogs and cats are safer indoors, except when taken out for exercise. During walks, short-haired dogs may feel more comfortable wearing a sweater.
    • Help neighborhood outdoor cats – If there are outdoor cats, either owned pets or community cats (ferals, who are scared of people, and strays, who are lost or abandoned pets) in your area, remember that they need protection from the elements as well as food and water. It’s easy to give them a hand.
    • Give your pets plenty of water – Pets who spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the winter because keeping warm depletes energy. Routinely check your pet’s water dish to make certain the water is fresh and unfrozen.
    • Protect paws from salt – The salt and other chemicals used to melt snow and ice can irritate the pads of your pet’s feet. Wipe all paws with a damp towel before your pet licks them and irritates his/her mouth.
    • Avoid antifreeze poisoning – Antifreeze is a deadly poison, but it has a sweet taste that may attract animals and children. Wipe up spills and store antifreeze (and all household chemicals) out of reach.
    • The best tip of all: keep your pets with you – Probably the best prescription for winter’s woes is to keep your dog or cat inside with you and your family. The happiest dogs are those who are taken out frequently for walks and exercise, but kept inside the rest of the time.

    Read entire article at the Humane Society’s website.

  • How To Keep Your Pet Warm During The Rainy Season

    Posted on November 23rd, 2013
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    Pet care tips during winter.

    We’re getting into the colder months of the year and don’t you love to be able to go home out of the cold and curl up with your pajamas and sit by the fire.

    What about your dog? Don’t you want to make sure he is as warm and cozy as you are when you’re at home?

    Clear the Air would like to share some helpful tips to keeping your dog warm this winter:

    Keep them indoors. This is the surest way to keep your pets warm. Dogs, while they enjoy outings, are often happier indoors as well so they can dote on their owners. Cats enjoy being able to snuggle up somewhere warm indoors.

    Get your dog jackets and sweaters. If your home is a little chilly, cute jackets and sweaters can keep them warm. If they are going outside with you into the snow (dogs more than cats), it’s better to choose something that has a waterproof nylon covering.  Make sure the sweater or jacket fits them properly and they are comfortable enough to maneuver in it.

    Check the temperature before going out. In winter, as in summer, the temperature can feel worse than what the thermometer reads. Check the temperature and the wind chill factor to keep your dog from getting a chill.

    Proper outdoor housing. If your dog spends a lot of his time outdoors, make sure he has the right housing. His doghouse should have a sloped roof, insulation and even a heater if he is expected to live in there.

    Bedding. His bed should be at least 3 inches off the cold floor to avoid drafts. Low platforms made of a light wood or aluminum frame with canvas stretched over it suit these pets just fine.

    Booties. Your dog regulates his temperature through the soles of his feet (as well as his tongue, of course). When walking in the snow, booties can help keep him warm. This will also protect him from salt and other products used to melt ice.

    Increase feeding. Pets use up more calories in the winter trying to stay warm. Feed them a little more in the winter months, especially if they spend a lot of time outside.

    Use a hot water bottle or snuggle disk. If your home is chilly, you can keep your dog or cat warm by using a hot water bottle under his bed or even a snuggle disk, which is a manufactured disk that is heated in a microwave oven and can maintain heat for hours.

    Don’t forget the occasional special treat , belly rub or scratch on the head. Nothing warms your dog and cat’s hearts more than special food and attention, so give him both.

  • How To Care For Your Pets In Cold Weather

    Posted on November 6th, 2013
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    Cold weather care tips for you and your pets.

    In Southern California our “cold weather” is usually pretty mild compared to other parts of the country.

    But keep in mind it does still get cold at night. Cold enough you need to take precaution for your pets.

    Clear The Air would like to share some tips on how to care for your pet during the colder winter months:

    • Don’t leave pets outdoors when the temperatures drop. Of course dogs need outdoor exercise however keeping them outside for lengthy periods of time during freezing conditions can cause health hazards.
    • Make sure shorter coated dogs don’t spend too much time playing outside in the cold weather. If your dog will wear a comfortable sweater during walks and outdoor playtime, we recommend it.
    • Dogs and cats are safer indoors altogether. Animals left outside unattended pose the risk of being stolen or otherwise harmed.
    • Look for signs of hypothermia during cold weather conditions. These include weak pulse, dilated pupils, decreased heart rate, extreme shivering, pale or blue mucous membranes, stupor or unconsciousness. Consequences of sever hypothermia can cause neurological problems including coma, heart problems and kidney failure.
    • Don’t let your pet be exposed to wind chill. If you must keep your pet outdoors, protect him with a dry, draft-free doghouse large enough for the dog to sit and lie down comfortable but small enough to keep in his body heat.
    • Pets that spend more time outdoors need more food in the winter. Routinely check your pet’s water dish to make sure his water is fresh as well.
    • Don’t expose your pets to antifreeze. This is a deadly poison that has a sweet taste which attracts animals. Wipe up spills and store antifreeze out of reach of pets and children.
  • Skin and Paw Care Tips For The Winter

    Posted on December 28th, 2012
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    Now is the time to visit the mountains and go skiing or take a trip to the snow with your family. If you are bringing your dog with you, please keep these winter tips from the ASPCA in mind.

    Exposure to winter’s dry, cold air and chilly rain, sleet and snow can cause chapped paws and itchy, flaking skin, but these aren’t the only discomforts pets can suffer. Winter walks can become downright dangerous if chemicals from ice-melting agents are licked off of bare paws.

    Says Dr. Louise Murray, ASPCA Director of Medicine, “During the winter, products used as de-icers on sidewalks and other areas can lead to trouble for our animal companions, potentially causing problems ranging from sore feet to internal toxicity. Pet parents should take precautions to minimize their furry friends’ exposure to such agents.”

    To help prevent cold weather dangers from affecting your pet’s paws and skin, please heed the following advice from our experts:

    • Repeatedly coming out of the cold into the dry heat can cause itchy, flaking skin. Keep your home humidified and towel dry your pet as soon as he comes inside, paying special attention to his feet and in between the toes.
    • Trim long-haired dogs to minimize the clinging of ice balls, salt crystals and de-icing chemicals that can dry on the skin. (Don’t neglect the hair between the toes!)
    • Bring a towel on long walks to clean off stinging, irritated paws. After each walk, wash and dry your pet’s feet to remove ice, salt and chemicals—and check for cracks in paw pads or redness between the toes.
    • Bathe your pets as little as possible during cold spells. Washing too often can remove essential oils and increase the chance of developing dry, flaky skin. If your pooch must be bathed, ask your vet to recommend a moisturizing shampoo and/or rinse.
    • Dressing your pet in a sweater or coat will help to retain body heat and prevent skin from getting dry.
    • Booties help minimize contact with painful salt crystals, poisonous anti-freeze and chemical ice-melting agents. They can also help prevent sand and salt from getting lodged in between bare toes, causing irritation. Use pet-friendly ice melts whenever possible.
    • Massaging petroleum jelly into paw pads before going outside helps to protect from salt and chemical agents. And moisturizing after a good toweling off helps to heal chapped paws.
    • Brushing your pet regularly not only gets rid of dead hair, but also stimulates blood circulation, improving the skin’s overall condition.
    • Pets burn extra energy by trying to stay warm in wintertime, sometimes causing dehydration. Feeding your pet a little bit more during the cold weather and making sure she has plenty of water to drink will help to keep her well-hydrated, and her skin less dry.
    • Remember, if the weather’s too cold for you, it’s probably too cold for your pet. Animal companions should remain indoors as much as possible during the winter months and never be left alone in vehicles when the mercury drops.

    For more information about pet care in winter, please read our Top Ten Cold Weather Tips. If you spot wounds or redness on your pet’s feet, please contact your veterinarian immediately.

    Read more at: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/pet-care-tips/top-ten-winter-skin-paw-care-tips