Cold Weather Danger: Hypothermia in Dogs

A dog lays curled up on a snowy landscape.

Cold weather is something we all have to deal with in the Midwest, and this includes our pets. That’s why it’s important to understand the signs of hypothermia in dogs and its prevention. Aside from being unpleasant when you have to go outside, very frosty days can spell trouble for pets. 

Hypothermia is not so uncommon in our four-legged friends. It is a higher risk for dogs left outside most of the time in winter, but dogs in cold buildings or small dogs that are outside too long are also at risk of suffering hypothermia. 

Oakland Veterinary Referral Services is here to help you learn more about hypothermia and what you can do to keep your pet safe this season.


Fun Activities for Your Pet During Cold Weather

A white dog with chin resting stares out of a window to a winter scene white with snow.

Brr! When Michigan’s winter comes, it can be a frosty, sleety mess. Even during those cold months, an active dog or cat will still need to get some exercise and mental enrichment. After all, you know how tired the same-old, same-old can be when you’ve exhausted all of the TV channels and cleaned out all of your closets.


Baby, It’s Cold Outside: Cold Weather Safety For Pets

OVRS_iStock_000049416582_LargeIt may be an El Nino year, but that doesn’t mean it will be warm in Michigan this winter. Cold weather can pose serious risks to your pet’s health and safety. We offer you a list of practical ways you can keep your pets safe and comfortable all winter long.   

Cold Weather Safety Tips

  • Stay home – Pets are not much safer in a cold car than they are in a warm one. Hypothermia is deadly and pets are just as susceptible to it as humans.
  • Stay in – Dogs and cats should not be outside for prolonged periods in the cold. It’s a myth that animals are more resistant to cold than humans; the reality is that our pets can suffer the harmful effects of cold weather just as easily as we can.
  • If you must leave pets outside – Provide a warm, dry shelter with plenty of cozy bedding. Puppies and older dogs are more sensitive to the cold so it would be better to take them outside only to relieve themselves. Shovel out a spot if there’s deep snow.
  • Paw protection – Be aware of your dog’s paw pads while walking as snow and ice can damage the pads or make walking difficult. Clip the fur between toe pads to reduce the amount of snow collecting between the toes. Or spray the pads with cooking spray just before your walk in very cold weather.


Keeping Your Pet Safe: Ice and Snow

Snow CatCold winter weather, along with ice and snow, is never unexpected in Michigan come January and into early Spring. With cold, slippery conditions and the extremes of winter weather come unique dangers and concerns for our pets. Don’t risk your pet’s health and safety when the mercury drops. Be on the lookout for these common injuries and risks: Continue…