Keep your pets warm
It is a cold winter and many pet owners make the mistake to think their furry friends are not cold. It’s a common belief that dogs and cats are more resistant than people to cold weather because of their fur, but it’s untrue.
Like people, they too are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should be kept inside.
- Ensure that your animals have access to shelter and warm bedding at all times. Preferably, allow them to sleep indoors.
- If your dogs live outside during winter, make sure that the kennel is waterproof, and position the kennel so that it is not directly facing the wind and rain. Raise the kennel slightly off the ground to prevent dampness.
- Don’t keep puppies, kittens or other young animals outside in winter as they have not yet built up a resistance to the cold. Keep them indoors, in a warm environment.
- During this time you can also add a little extra food to your dog or cat’s daily meals. The cold weather
makes them burn up more energy, and extra food will help them to meet these demands.
Continue exercising your pets – don’t stop because of the weather.
Why you should vaccinate
Vaccinations protect your pet from several highly contagiousdiseases such as canine distemper, parvovirus infection and respiratory tract infections. It also protects against transmissible diseases such as rabies that also pose a risk to humans. Vaccination will not cure a pet that is already sick.
Only healthy pets should be vaccinated. The majority of pets experience no adverse effects following vaccination. A small number of animals may become feverish and have a reduced appetite. These reactions are mild and of short duration.
In extremely rare cases, an animal may experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction. Such an animal can be treated successfully if attended to immediately.
(Source: South African Veterinary Council)