DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – With below freezing temperatures it’s uncomfortable for humans to be outside, but CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, Brian Weltge, said if you’re cold, chances are your pet is too.
“Know the animals that you’re working with, which is your animal, and know that this is not the time of year to keep them out for extended periods of time,” he said. “We understand that people have to walk their dogs so they can go and do their business, go potty, but we also understand that people want to exercise their dogs because they are highly energetic, or rambunctious. And you can do those things, just use common sense.”
Weltge said just like humans, dogs can get severely uncomfortable in extremely cold temperatures, even with their built-in fur coats. While people react by shivering, he said your pet may also show noticeable signs of distress.
“They start looking uncomfortable for sure,” Weltge explained. “You can start seeing their disposition change. Some dogs, when their feet get too cold, start lifting up their feet… and walking a little funny because it’s not comfortable for them.”
On top of the biting cold, Weltge said it’s important to clean your pet’s paws from salt and other irritants that may have been used to treat snow and ice. Feeding them extra meals, he added, can also help insulate their bodies with fat for the brief stints they will need to be outdoors. And he said there are even things you can do to protect community pets and animals.
“Outdoor cats, sometimes free-roaming cats, can actually climb up inside the engine compartment of cars, because it’s warm. And so it’s always a good idea to knock on the hood of a car to try to scare any cat that may have crawled up into your engine block to keep warm. It scares them and they run out.”
Weltge added, community members who see or suspect the mistreatment of pets or animals in the cold should reach out to the Humane Society at 937-268-PETS.