With colder temperature predictions being made for the Faulkner County area this weekend and the future winter season, pet owners have the opportunity to make arrangements for their animals to get them through the cold weather before temperatures dip even further.

The Log Cabin Democrat some with Officer David Mitchell from the Conway Animal Welfare Unit Thursday to see what owners can do to prepare.

Mitchell said one of the main things to keep a watch for, especially with outside animals, is making sure adequate bedding is provided which includes dry, fresh and frequently changed items to protect them from the cold.

"That needs to be changed out periodically," he said.

Mitchell said the other thing to monitor is drinking water. With temperatures dipping overnight and into early morning, he said owners need to check water bowls to make sure liquid hasn't frozen and animals have water to drink.

In addition to that, Mitchell said, any animal that is tethered is in danger because, if they are stuck in one position, risk the ability to keep their body temperature up. He said keeping their body temperature up during winter weather is crucial to their survival.

"Where we can, it's a good idea to bring them in," he said.

Mitchell said where some dogs, like huskies and German Shepards, are built to withstand some cold weather, even those animals being exposed to 30 degree and below temperatures is a problem. He said some smaller dogs even have trouble with 40 degree and below temperatures.

Overall, how well an animal can withstand the cold, Mitchell said, is determined by that animal's body fat.

American Humane and its Red Star Animal Emergency Services released tips in 2016 for people who live in areas experiencing cold weather.

"Pets left to fend for themselves in cold weather are susceptible to injury and death," the website reads.

According to the organization's website, it's important to plan ahead and pay attention to weather warnings including possibly keeping a pet's coat a little longer in the winter to provide more warmth or purchasing a coat or sweater for shorter-coat breeds.

Other tips noted: dry — like after baths — animals completely before taking outside, keep dogs on a leash during walks to keep them from getting lost, keep pets inside during the day and night when possible, provide draft-free shelter when outside, keep cats indoors to prevent them from seeking shelter in possibly dangerous areas like hoods of cars, remember staying warm means extra calories for outside animals so seek advice from veterinarian, watch for salt and deicers so animals don't eat them and make sure to wipe paws when coming inside and use nontoxic antifreeze.

Hounds Hideaway in Conway also released cold weather tips for customers Dec. 28.

The business's website drew attention to paw protection for animals including cracked paw pads from increased activity as well as eating and exercise during cold weather days, advising increasing food allowance.

"Even if their activity level is about the same, playing in cooler weather uses more energy," the website reads.

Other care includes older animals who might be affected by the lower temperatures more than younger ones.

"Sort of like humans, the cold may affect senior dogs or those with arthritis more than others," the website reads. "Consider orthopedic bedding or a joint supplement, or check your dog food label to make sure it includes vitamins that will help promote joint health."

With colder temperature predictions being made for the Faulkner County area this weekend and the future winter season, pet owners have the opportunity to make arrangements for their animals to get them through the cold weather before temperatures dip even further.
The Log Cabin Democrat some with Officer David Mitchell from the Conway Animal Welfare Unit Thursday to see what owners can do to prepare.
Mitchell said one of the main things to keep a watch for, especially with outside animals, is making sure adequate bedding is provided which includes dry, fresh and frequently changed items to protect them from the cold.
"That needs to be changed out periodically," he said.
Mitchell said the other thing to monitor is drinking water. With temperatures dipping overnight and into early morning, he said owners need to check water bowls to make sure liquid hasn't frozen and animals have water to drink.
In addition to that, Mitchell said, any animal that is tethered is in danger because, if they are stuck in one position, risk the ability to keep their body temperature up. He said keeping their body temperature up during winter weather is crucial to their survival.
"Where we can, it's a good idea to bring them in," he said.
Mitchell said where some dogs, like huskies and German Shepards, are built to withstand some cold weather, even those animals being exposed to 30 degree and below temperatures is a problem. He said some smaller dogs even have trouble with 40 degree and below temperatures.
Overall, how well an animal can withstand the cold, Mitchell said, is determined by that animal's body fat.
American Humane and its Red Star Animal Emergency Services released tips in 2016 for people who live in areas experiencing cold weather.
"Pets left to fend for themselves in cold weather are susceptible to injury and death," the website reads.
According to the organization's website, it's important to plan ahead and pay attention to weather warnings including possibly keeping a pet's coat a little longer in the winter to provide more warmth or purchasing a coat or sweater for shorter-coat breeds.
Other tips noted: dry — like after baths — animals completely before taking outside, keep dogs on a leash during walks to keep them from getting lost, keep pets inside during the day and night when possible, provide draft-free shelter when outside, keep cats indoors to prevent them from seeking shelter in possibly dangerous areas like hoods of cars, remember staying warm means extra calories for outside animals so seek advice from veterinarian, watch for salt and deicers so animals don't eat them and make sure to wipe paws when coming inside and use nontoxic antifreeze.
Hounds Hideaway in Conway also released cold weather tips for customers Dec. 28.
The business's website drew attention to paw protection for animals including cracked paw pads from increased activity as well as eating and exercise during cold weather days, advising increasing food allowance.
"Even if their activity level is about the same, playing in cooler weather uses more energy," the website reads.
Other care includes older animals who might be affected by the lower temperatures more than younger ones.
"Sort of like humans, the cold may affect senior dogs or those with arthritis more than others," the website reads. "Consider orthopedic bedding or a joint supplement, or check your dog food label to make sure it includes vitamins that will help promote joint health."