A Winter Storm and Your PetFebruary 7, 2013
~ by Andrea Berry, Chase Farm Veterinary Hospital
It looks like our region will get walloped again with Winter Storm Nemo. Dangerously cold weather and blizzard conditions are in the forecast for the next few days and this means your pet could be affected. While you’re running around to get ready or waiting in line at the Stop & Shop buying your emergency supplies remember that your Pet needs an emergency plan too.
Why the Cold is Dangerous even for Dogs and Cats
Many people assume that because dogs and cats have fur they are able to tolerate the cold better than other animals or humans but this isn’t necessarily true. Just like us, our pets have become accustomed to being kept in a cozy and warm environment. Extreme changes in temperature or climate can cause pets harm just as it can humans.
Stay inside. The AVMA warns that during extreme cold, snow or other weather conditions “Cats and dogs should be kept inside during cold weather. It’s a common belief that dogs and cats are resistant than people to cold weather because of their fur, but it’s untrue. Like people, cats and dogs are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should be kept inside. Longer-haired and thick-coated dog breeds, such as huskies and other dogs bred for colder climates, are more tolerant of cold weather; but no pet should be left outside for long periods of time in below-freezing weather”. (see https://www.avma.org/public/PetCare/Pages/Cold-weather-pet-safety.aspx) for more information about keeping your pet safe during cold weather.
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Pet Emergency Supply Kit
When buying up supplies keep in mind that you’ll need to have extra pet essentials on hand in case of a power outage, if you’re simply stuck inside the house for a few days, or worst case if you need to take shelter elsewhere. Here are some important things to have on hand for your pet.
- Extra bedding (and clothing if needed for those little ones)
- 3-5 days worth of Food
- Dishes or bowls for food and water
- Identification tags
- Vaccine paperwork
- Extra leashes, collars
- Pet Carriers
- Here is a helpful link for Assembling a Pet ID Pack and a Go Kit (go towww.dem.ri.gov/animals for more details on what to include in your pack and kit)
It’s super important, especially if you and your pet need to seek shelter away from home, that your pet has proper identification. Pets can easily become disoriented in a storm or in a shelter environment where there is lots of new stimuli. Knowing that your pet has collars, tags – or better yet a non-removable microchip – will provide peace of mind to you and an extra measure of safety for your pet.
- Rabies tag and/or License tag
- Name tag with phone numbers – (Need an activity when you’re snowed in this weekend? See http://www.marthastewart.com/264719/pet-id-tag) for a fun project idea. You and the kids can make the pet a cute id tag at home!)
- Microchip – it only takes a minute in the office but will save you a lifetime of worry! (see www.homeagain.com for more information on the benefits of a microchip)
- TAGG GPS Tracker – Chase Farm Veterinary Hospital sells TAGG – the GPS pet tracker system (see www.petracker.com for more information about how it works)
Talk to any of us at Chase Farm Veterinary Hospital and we can help you easily replace your rabies tag, print out your vaccine paperwork, and even get your pet micro-chipped or set up with a TAGG GPS pet tracker system!
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Pet Friendly Shelters in Southeastern MA
Hopefully all that you’ll need to worry about this weekend is getting your driveway shoveled out, but just in case you need assistance here is a list of some pet-friendly places to stay in our area!
Comfort Inn and Suites – Fall River360 Airport Road , Fall River, MA, US, 02720 Phone: (508) 672-0011 Fax: (508) 676-625 http://www.comfortinn.com/hotel-fall_river-massachusetts-MA189
Seaport Inn & Marina Fairhaven110 Middle Street, Fairhaven, MA 02710 508-997-0281 http://www.seaportinnandmarina.com/
Dartmouth Council on Aging628 Dartmouth St , Dartmouth MA (508) 999-4717 this will be the First place that Dartmouth residents will be evacuated to in need. Pets are allowed but must be brought in carriers.
Pet friendly shelter at Cape Cod Regional Technical School, 351 Pleasant Lake Ave., Harwich, MA.
Emergency Medical Facilities for Pets
If your pet has an emergency during a time when we are closed, please contact one of these local 24 hour emergency facilities to assist you.