DALLAS, TX — As temperatures hover near freezing and North Texas faces winter weather advisories, it is crucial for pet owners to prioritize their safety. Dallas requires all pets have access to an adequate warm and dry shelter once the actual or effective temperature reaches 32 degrees, the city said in a news release.
“The law requires that pets have adequate shelter, but what is adequate during our typical 50-degree winter days is not adequate during the freezing weather we are facing now,” Ed Jamison, director of Dallas Animal Services, said in the release. “The safest option is to bring your pets indoors.”
The city is asking anyone who sees a pet in distress or is left outdoors in temperatures 32 degrees or below without shelter to call 3-1-1 and make a report to Dallas Animal Services (DAS).
All pets are at risk during this weather, regardless of size or breed.
“Don’t be fooled by your pet’s fur coat,” Jamison added. “Even winter breeds with thick coats are at risk when temperatures reach freezing, particularly here in Texas where pets are not used to this type of weather.”
The city shared the following tips on how to keep your pets safe this winter season:
Towel dry your pet as soon as you come inside on cold, wet days to keep pets comfortable and avoid skin issues.Avoid shaving your pet’s fur short in winter months as this decreases their ability to stay warm.Keep walks short during wet or icy days and consider massaging petroleum jelly into their paws before leaving the house to provide extra protection. Booties are another great option!Pavement and cement are very cold in the winter, so walking on grass may be a more comfortable option.Remember that antifreeze and many chemicals used to melt ice are toxic to pets and should be avoided when possible or kept out of reach.Never leave a pet in a car during cold spells; cars can act as refrigerators and can cause pets to freeze to death or experience hypothermia.
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