With Greater Cincinnati’s worst storm of the season fast approaching and much of the nation already covered in snow, PETA is offering tips about how to keep animals safe in cold weather — along with a little help from Country singer Loretta Lynn.
Although they are naturally equipped with fur coats, dogs and other animals still can suffer from frostbite and exposure, and they can become dehydrated when water sources freeze.
PETA — People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals — offers the following tips:
** Keep animals inside. This is especially important to remember when it comes to puppies and kittens, elderly animals, small animals, and dogs with short hair. Also, short-haired animals will benefit from using a sweater or coat while on walks
** Don't allow cats or dogs to roam freely outdoors. During winter, cats sometimes climb under the hoods of cars to be near warm engines and are badly injured or killed when the car is started. Also, food rations for animals should be increased in winter because they are burning more calories to keep warm
** Keep an eye out for stray animals. Take unidentified animals inside until you can find their guardians or get them to an animal shelter. If strays are skittish or otherwise unapproachable, provide food and water and call your local Humane Society for assistance in trapping them and getting them indoors
** Wipe off your dogs' or cats' legs, feet, and stomachs after they come in from the snow. Salt and other chemicals can make your animals sick if they ingest them while cleaning themselves.
** When you see dogs left outdoors, provide them with proper shelter. Details on how to provide housing can be found at www.HelpingAnimals.com.
Web users can view PETA's cold-weather public service announcement featuring the song "I Wanna Be Free," donated by Loretta Lynn.