Keeping Pets Warm in the Winter

We have warmed up a bit after our first freeze Thursday night, but it is a reminder winter weather is coming. With more freezing temperatures on the horizon, our four legged friends could face some dangers if they are not properly looked after.   
Newschannel 6 went down to the Wichita County Humane Society and learned that it is crucial that every pet have proper outdoor housing when it is cold.

Mary Stevens, Office Manager with the Humane Society showed Newschannel 6 crews around the grounds and showed us what it takes to keep nearly 70 dogs warm. Every dog kennel had proper bedding inside and there are dog houses spread throughout the yard. She says that is what every pet should have in every home.

We have not hit the winter season yet and we have already seen temperatures in the twenties. Mary Stevens comments, "They're little and they are not meant to be outside."

Whether your pets are small or large, Mary Stevens says it is important they stay protected. "When the temperatures get very low, little dogs they tend not to be able to keep warm. Their body temperature doesn't get that heated during the day so at night they get very cold." Stevens says every pet left outside during the day needs to have a dog house or outdoor housing so they can stay warm. That means there should be bedding, towels, hay, or cedar chips inside so that your pet can keep its body temperature up and warm.

No matter if your pet has longer or shorter fur, Stevens says a cold pet will suffer. "A lot of times you can just find them huddled up in a corner shivering. They can get hypothermia and if it's really cold they can get lethargic. Again every dog that is outside should have a dog house."

As Texoma continues into colder days Stevens reminds every resident to be on the lookout to make sure every pet is safe and well taken care of. "Check in your neighborhoods and just look around. If you have a neighbor that has a dog that's outside and and doesn't have the proper things, a dog house or if you see the water is frozen, then you can call animal control."

Mary Stevens tells Newschannel 6 when temperatures really drop it is important that you change your pets water daily. She also recommends if it is freezing outside keep all pets indoors just to be extra safe.

Wichita County Humane Society tells us at this time of the year they run low on bedding for all their sheltered dogs and cats. That is why Newschannel 6 is joining with them to help both pets and people in the Newschannel 6 Coat and Blanket Drive. Our collection kicks off the day before Thanksgiving. We hope you will make this the best year ever.

Natalie Garcia,  Newschannel 6