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Cold Weather Maintenance: People, Pets & Cars - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Cold Weather Maintenance: People, Pets & Cars

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Keeping yourself warm in the frigid cold is the main priority:

1. Dress in layers to keep the heat in

2. Stay dry, being wet intensifies the effects of the cold.

 Signs of frostbite:

1. Initial pain or numbness

2. Redness to the skin

Worst: blistering or darkening of the skin

 Keeping cars running in the cold:

1.  Don't have a battery older than four years

2.  Check your charger and starter systems

3.  Make sure the connectors on your battery are clean and free of any corrosion.

4.  Having synthetic oil in your car can make a big difference when it comes to the cold weather.

 Animal safety when the mercury dips:

  1. Keep your cat inside. Outdoors, felines can freeze, become lost or be stolen, injured or killed. Cats who are allowed to stray are exposed to infectious diseases, including rabies, from other cats, dogs and wildlife.

  2. Thoroughly wipe off your dog's legs and stomach when he comes in out of the sleet, snow or ice. He can ingest salt, antifreeze or other potentially dangerous chemicals while licking his paws, and his paw pads may also bleed from snow or encrusted ice.

  3. Never shave your dog down to the skin in winter, as a longer coat will provide more warmth. When you bathe your dog in the colder months, be sure to completely dry him before taking him out for a walk. Own a short-haired breed? Consider getting him a coat or sweater with a high collar or turtleneck with coverage from the base of the tail to the belly. For many dogs, this is regulation winter wear.

  4. Never leave your dog or cat alone in a car during cold weather. A car can act as a refrigerator in the winter, holding in the cold and causing the animal to freeze to death.
  5. Puppies do not tolerate the cold as well as adult dogs, and may be difficult to housebreak during the winter. If your puppy appears to be sensitive to the weather, you may opt to paper-train him inside. If your dog is sensitive to the cold due to age, illness or breed type, take him outdoors only to relieve himself.
  6. Like coolant, antifreeze is a lethal poison for dogs and cats. Be sure to thoroughly clean up any spills. Visit the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center more information.

10.  Make sure your companion animal has a warm place to sleep, off the floor and away from all drafts. A cozy dog or cat bed with a warm blanket or pillow is perfect.

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