*The first thing pet owners should consider is keeping animals indoors throughout the winter. The cold weather can suppress pet’s immune systems and worsen a cold if they have a sickness coming on, said Jay.
*If a pet must be kept outdoors, owners should ensure that they have some kind of enclosure with warm bedding and possibly a heating lamp, said Jay. Good insulators for outdoor enclosures include hay, straw or insulated bed-ding, said Betsy. Owners should also consider lining the inside of the walls, particularly if the structure is susceptible to wind.
*Owners should also be cautious of water in outdoor dog bowls to ensure that they are not frozen over in the low temperatures.
n Dr. Betsy Hendley reminds pet owners that they should continue their usual regimen of heartworm and flea medication because these are still threats to animals even in the winter.
”That is still really important all through the winter,” she said.
*Dogs who are kept outdoors might need additional food, Betsy said, because of the energy they burn to keep warm. However, the diet for indoor dogs need not change.
*Pet owners should be aware of what pets are ingesting during the holidays, said Betsy. Chocolate, some kinds of nuts and ham can upset animals stomachs and even be toxic for some, she added. “They should use caution with what they feed their pets around the holidays,” she said.