Bundle Up Your Pets When Temperatures Drop

By Kristen Tripodi

Published 01/03 2014 06:46PM

Updated 01/04 2014 06:22PM

COLCHESTER, Vt. -Whether your pet lives indoors or out, when the temperatures drop below zero you need to take extra precautions to keep them safe. 
Just as we layer up to brave the frigid temperatures so should our pets.
“It’s been hard to keep all the sizes in stock. And we order like crazy,” said Joanne Farrell, owner of Doggie Styles Grooming and Boutique in Colchester.
Farrell says this winter outerwear for our four legged friends is a hot item.
“We sell more sweaters than anything else probably because it’s the best design,” said Farrell.
“It may look a little foolish and the pet may feel a little foolish but it’s really helping them,” said Dr. Andrew Fitzgerald with Fitzgerald Veterinary Hospital in Colchester.
Dr. Fitzgerald says booties, coats, and sweaters are all great ways to keep your pets warm.
But when the temperature drops it's best to keep your pets inside most of the time; only taking them outside quickly to go to the bathroom.
“Watch your animal. Use common sense. They are going to tell you what’s right. If they are running right back to the door to get back inside they need to get inside,” said Dr. Fitzgerald.
Inside- enjoying toys and warm blankets.
That's just where we found all the animals at the Humane Society of Chittenden County.
The staff says on cold days like this the leashes stay put as all walks are cancelled.
And dogs like Charles Barkley here - are bundled up before a brief bathroom break.
“Be understanding if she does have a little accident inside the house this time of year -it’s for a reason. She’s just not comfortable enough being outside,” said Dr. Fitzgerald.
Dr. Fitzgerald also recommends wiping salt off your dog’s paws because ingesting it could make them sick.
“And then there are other chemicals that are out there this time of year like anti-freeze which can be very toxic to pets. You have to be really careful about that,” said Dr. Fitzgerald.
The bottom line, if it's too cold outside for you it’s too cold for your pet.

Dr. Fitzgerald says if you have an outdoor cat be extra careful before starting your car.
Try honking your horn to warn the cat because they like to stay near the warm engine during winter.

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