Monday, December 27, 2010

Wake Up Canada! If It's Too Cold For You - It's Too Cold For Them!

Wake Up Canada! If It's Too Cold For You - It's Too Cold For Them! 
December 10th and with winter not even official, much of Ontario and many parts of the country and areas in the U.S. have already received over a meter of snow already. 
Another storm brewing snow could most definately reach all time record breaking amounts and pets cannot be left outside to endure safely the temperatures expected and the deep snow. 
No matter how you cut it- snow is cold. The Northern parts of Ontario reach easily frosty temperatures that can cause frost bite in just minutes. Pets suffer the extremeties too.

Q: What’s the big deal about antifreeze being bad for cats and dogs? Is it really that harmful?

A: Anti-freeze is extremely toxic to dogs and cats. unfortunately, anti-freeze is also sweet-tasting and pets will lap it up if they find even a few drops in the driveway or on the garage floor.

One-half teaspoon of anti-freeze per pound of body weight is enough to cause the clinical signs of poisoning. The poison attacks the nervous system and the kidneys; the symptoms are depression, lack of coordination, vomiting and diarrhea, increased thirst, and seizures. The toxin is rapidly absorbed; symptoms can begin within an hour of exposure.

The toxic ingredient in most anti-freeze is ethylene glycol. If you suspect your animal has ingested anti-freeze, call your veterinarian immediately. There is an antidote available, but time is of the essence; the poison can be fatal if the kidneys are damaged. Antizol-vet is available as a prescription drug to be given intravenously if anti-freeze poisoning is suspected or confirmed. There is a new anti-freeze on the market made from propylene glycol that appears to be safer. However, propylene glycol is also toxic; although it does not attack the kidneys, it does affect the nervous system and may cause lack of coordination and seizures.

The best bet is to carefully cap all containers of anti-freeze and keep them out of the reach of pets. If small amounts do drip when the anti-freeze is being added to the car radiator, clean them up and flush the area with water. Watch for a leaky rad. 

Hypothermia and frostbite

Hypothermia and frostbite

Q: What are hypothermia and frostbite?

A: Hypothermia is a lowering of the core body temperature well below the dog’s normal 101.5-102.5 normal rectal temperature. Substantial lowering of the temperature interferes with the metabolic functions of the body and affects the internal organs. A dog’s first reaction to the lowering of his temperature is to shiver. Shivering increases muscle activity, which in turn increase heat production. At the same time, his blood circulation shifts away from his legs and feet to his internal organs.

Mild hypothermia causes an increase in blood pressure and heart rate, but if the time and severity of heat loss continues, heart rate and blood pressure decline and cardiac arrhythmias or cardiac arrest can occur. Severe hypothermia leads to respiratory depression, lethargy, lack of coordination, paralysis, and collapse.

Treatment for hypothermia involves rapid warming of the body. In mild cases, heating pads, hot water bottles, or a warm water bath will do the trick, but severe cases require introducing warmed fluids internally via intravenous flow, dialysis, or enema. Veterinarians may also use corticosteroids and monitor the dog for heart arrhythmias and pneumonia and check for frostbite.

Prolonged exposure to the cold can also cause frostbite — the death of tissue in the extremities. Dog toes, tails, ear tips, and scrotum are the most common frostbite areas. Frostbitten tissue appears pale and is cold to the touch. It should be rewarmed slowly and given time to heal. It may turn red and swollen and be very painful as it heals. If it does not heal in three or four days, amputation of the dead tissue should be done to avoid gangrene or mummification of the area.

Obviously, prevention is worth more than a pound of cure with hypothermia and frostbite. So, a few simple precautions:

If Ranger is an outside dog with a thick double coat, is accustomed to frigid winter weather and has a sheltered place to get away from wind and rain, he can probably stay outside no matter what winter throws his way. But if he’s old, arthritic, or debilitated in some way or if his coat’s not heavy enough, let him sleep inside when the temperature dips below freezing.

If Riddle enjoys her daily excursions, by all means continue, but watch out for chemical ice-melting compounds on driveways, sidewalks, and streets. If you can’t avoid them, wipe her feet when you get back home so she doesn’t ingest the chemical when licking her paws. If the sidewalk is slushy, put some baby oil on Riddle’s feet before you go out to help prevent slushsicles from forming between the pads of her paws.

If your pet is a puppy or geriatric dog, don’t leave him outside without supervision, especially in snow. Dog feet can get very cold very quickly, especially on thin-coated dogs, and you may have to rescue a shivering pet who cannot walk across the snow.

Winter diet

Q: Now that it’s cold out, my dog seems to be hungrier even though I’m giving him the same amount he’s always had. Is it okay to feed him more?

A: Dogs may tend to eat more during cold weather, but inclement weather may prevent them from getting enough exercise to burn off extra calories. If Maestro begins begging at the table or looking particularly wistful when her dish is empty, beware of “just letting her lick the plates” or tossing her a bit of cheese or chicken when you’re fixing dinner. If you’re not careful, she’ll need an exercise regimen to slim her waist when spring rolls around.

Table scraps can be fed to dogs without ill effects if they replace some of the regular diet, not add to it. Just avoid spicy or fatty foods and keep portions small. A quarter or third cup of boiled chicken meat or turkey giblets in broth or a few left-over veggies (unbuttered, without sauce) can be a real treat for a pooch tantalized by the good smells coming from the kitchen.

Food tends to sit around the house during the holidays. Dogs quickly learn about hard candy in that bowl on the coffee table or the box of chocolates that the boss sent over. And they learn to cadge food from guests at a party or from kids who trail Christmas cookie crumbs throughout the house. Some dogs will eat wrappers and all in their haste to down the prize before discovery.

Chocolate, of course, is poisonous to dogs, but the toxicity depends on the amount of theobromine in the particular candy the dog has eaten. Dark chocolate and baking chocolate tend to be high in the substance; milk chocolate tends to have little. Shasta might eat a piece or two of milk chocolate with few or no ill effects, but a bar of baking chocolate could kill her.

Even if the ill-gotten gains don’t poison a pooch, they can cause stomach upset, diarrhea, constipation, or intestinal blockages – hardly worth the momentary acquiescence to pleading eyes and nagging of a hungry pet. Every successful food theft or begging session leads a pet further down the path to a life of crime. So, as with anti-freeze, the best bet is to control the dog’s access to food throughout the season. It’s not difficult to keep bowls of snack food out of reach, to confine the dog when people are eating, or to clean up the crumbs after snacks and meals to avoid creating a food felon. As with most things in life, preventing problems usually takes less effort than solving them.

Freezing Cold Weather will kill your pet.

"Pets are solely dependent on their human caregivers for safety and comfort — especially so during the winter months," says Adam Goldfarb, director of the Humane Society of the United States' Pets at Risk program.
"Our pets are particularly vulnerable during winter storms and harsh winds."

As a pet owner, what can you do to be sure your furry friends stay toasty this winter.

Don't get a pet to "LIVE OUTSIDE". Mother Nature follows no rules. If you think you are doing any animal a favour while living in the colder regions of the US and Canada just because you feed them here and there- think again. Put yourself in that animals frozen state for a minute if you can. Imagine how distressing spending an entire winter outside without the warmth of shelter would be. If you think cats are resilient YOU ARE Mistaken.

Dog houses should be insulated and provide a warm raised area off of the ground for a dog to rest, no leaks from roof or sides and draft free to provide protection from blowing winds.

Although days may be warm a damp dog is a cold dog, come sundown when the temperatures plummet a damp dog can become a dead dog.

Use your head, If you have no time or concern to care for a pet of any sort; do that pet a favour... Please surrender them to the nearest NO KILL Animal shelter in your area. It is not too much to ask on behalf of the animal. You are all they have in this world.
 If you don't have their very best interests at heart, you should not have them at all. 
For a full List of NO KILL shelters visit;

Pets Get COLD Too

Don't leave pets outdoors when the temperature drops. To keep warm when it's necessary to be outside, short-coated dogs may feel more comfortable wearing a sweater during walks.

Be sure to feed your pets adequately in the winter. Pets who spend significant time outdoors on walks need more to eat in the winter, since keeping warm depletes energy. Be sure their water is kept fresh.

Use plastic bowls instead of metal for food and water that is served outside. You don't want your pet's tongue getting stuck to his or her dish in icy temps!

Keep your pet's feet clean. Salt and other chemicals used to melt snow and ice can irritate paw pads — and may even be harmful if ingested. Wipe feet with a damp towel before your dog or cat gets the chance to lick them!

Make your doghouse comfortable. If your dog does happen to live outside in a doghouse, be sure it's dry and draft-free, and has ample space for the pup to sit and lie down comfortably.

The floor should be raised a few inches off the ground and covered with cedar shavings or straw. The doorway should be covered, and the house should be turned to face away from the wind.

Remember, do your best to keep outdoor cats and dogs inside, especially on those brutally cold days. After all, it is the holiday season, meant for spending time with those you love — both with two and four legs!


Q: What should I use for bedding? I’ve heard that old blankets aren’t a good idea.

A: You heard right. Blankets and quilts are alright for people inside heated homes but outside, they trap moisture that can make your dog damp, chilly and uncomfortable. A better bedding is fresh clean hay or straw. They allow moisture to evaporate, retain warmth, are biodegradable and cost only a few dollars a bale. The best of these is “salt marsh” hay. All are readily available from farm supply and feed stores, stables, or local farmers. When buying straw or hay, use your nose! It should smell fresh and pleasant like dried grass clippings. Avoid any that smells strongly of mold or mildew. Spread the bedding generously in the dog house, four-to-five inches thick, and replace as needed.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Merry Christmas to all my readers

Dear readers Im sorry I haven't been posting very many blogs but Ive been so busy with family.Blogging animal rights stories has really taken a toll on my emotions and I had to slow down. The holidays are coming up soon and I wanted to let everyone know I hope this year will be the best Christmas ever .Thank you so much for reading my blog and caring about the welfare of animals.

              Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all!

This year has been a tough one filled with a lot of joy but also a lot of sadness and heart ache.
I pray this year will be better for animals and humans all over the world.
God Bless