During a cold spell, the risk of frostbite is also present for pets. For the occasion, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) of Saguenay offered some advice to owners to take certain precautions to avoid injuries.
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“We are talking about making short, more frequent outings. For example, if we tended to walk for an hour a day, we will try to go for shorter periods, so 10 minutes, take a break and come back afterwards,” shared the director. General of the SPCA Saguenay, Mélanie St-Gelais.
According to the organization, another way to prevent frostbite is to provide protection for your animal. “We are talking about coats, boots. But if the animal does not tolerate being dressed, you can put a fatty substance under the animal’s paws [sur les coussinets]“, explained Ms. St-Gelais, specifying that these solutions are effective only for short periods.
“If I buy him a coat, if I buy him good boots, I can slightly increase the time during which the animal will be able to have fun outside, but it is sure that it is not 100% effective. . I can’t say: I’m buying a coat, now my dog can spend the day outside,” warned Camille Boilard, animal health technician at the Hôpital du Boisé veterinary clinic in Saguenay.
An animal’s tolerance to cold can vary depending on its breed. Specialists advise owners to watch for signs in their companion.
“As soon as the dogs start lifting their paws a little more frequently, shivering, or laying down and licking their paws. These are signs that the animal is beginning to suffer from the cold. So we are better off going back inside, ”said the general manager of the SPCA Saguenay.
The organization asks the public not to hesitate to intervene if they see a stray animal during very cold weather.
“It happened recently, we have a little kitty who was brought to us after three days spent outside at -40. He suffered from severe cold. At the level of his tail, the skin was completely frozen. So we unfortunately have to do an amputation this week, ”said Ms. St-Gelais.