Attention pet owners

Editor, Advertiser:

This letter is meant to be a friendly reminder for all owners of outdoor pets.

The bitter cold part of winter is upon us with bone chilling winds and temperatures.

Even with a heavy winter coat on, below freezing or even worse, below zero temperatures can be unbearable, life threatening or even deadly.

Animals suffer the same misery from exposure to these weather extremes as we do. They depend on humans to provide proper shelter from the elements. The key word is ADEQUATE shelter. It has to provide warmth

Larger, open-ended structures do not protect pets from wind-driven rain, snow and freezing temperatures, especially if it has a dirt floor. Straw in it is not enough. Adding a straw-filled coop inside should work. An uninsulated coop with no straw provides no protection either. Dogs in these conditions suffer just like we would.

They cannot tell their owner, “I’m cold and miserable out here, please help me!” Provide an insulated, straw-filled coop, sized to fit the dog. Check the straw every couple of weeks. After the dog lays on it, it gets matted down. You may have to change it or add more.

If you can, when the temperatures drop below zero, bring the pet inside or even in the basement.

Also, make sure the dog’s water has not frozen.

Please, be a responsible, caring pet owner. No pet should have to suffer from being too cold. It’s up to us to see that they don’t.

Shellie Mac Nicol

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