TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – As we try our best to stay warm in the arctic-like temperatures, it’s also important we don’t forget about the needs of our furry friends.
“Think about yourself, if you were out there in a t-shirt or a light jacket, really quickly your extremities could get frost bite or you can suffer from hypothermia,” said Emi Griess, communications coordinator for Helping Hands Humane Society in Topeka. “Their ears, their noses, tips of their tails are really sensitive and unfortunately that can happen really quickly in this cold of weather.”
Griess advised to keep your pets inside as much as possible right now, making sure to keep potty breaks short. For smaller dogs who don’t want to go outside, it may be best to have potty pads inside instead.
When you do take your dogs outside, make sure to keep an eye on them so that they don’t eat or step on any ice melt, as that can be toxic to them, Griess said. When you bring them in, wipe off their paws as well.
If your pet cannot come inside for some reason, it’s important to have proper shelter for them, such as an elevated dog house with hay or straw, and fresh water that is not frozen.
The Topeka Animal Cruelty Ordinance requires animal owners to provide sufficient protection from temperatures below 40 degrees for their pets.
If you do see a pet outside that does not have proper shelter, you can call Topeka’s Animal Control dispatch at 785-368-9203.