Jan 03 2018

Cold: How Concerned Should We Be?

There is some concern about the cold weather here in Florida and the problem that we see is because our really cold weather doesn’t happen very often, people don’t put a lot of thought into what lower temperatures mean to our pets. It’s interesting that people will go to such effort to cover their plants on a cold night and then leave their dog or cat outside all night with no shelter or heat.

Considering that most of our pets are wearing their fur coat all the time, animals are somewhat more tolerant of the cold than we are. But the real issue is acclimation. If you spend much time in any environment, your body acclimates or become used to that range of temperatures. Our pets are the same way. Their bodies become more adjusted to the hot weather and less so to the cold. When truly cold temperatures happen, their bodies are no more ready for it than we are.

Animals in different parts of the country will have different tolerance points. For example, a dog from Minnesota or a cat from New York would be better prepared for the winter than our Florida pets.

Now, here are the guidelines for dealing with cold weather: A little common sense goes a long way.
If it’s too cold for you to be outside, your pet should not be either. More specifically, prolonged exposure to any temperatures less than 50 degrees will be uncomfortable for your pets. In temperatures less than 45 degrees, outdoor pets should be provided with an insulated shelter and in temperature less than 40 degrees, they should be indoors with some sort of heat source provided.

Try to keep warm folks!

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