Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald, staff veterinarian at VCA Alameda East Veterinary Hospital, said a fur coat doesn’t mean these pets are immune to the cold. (KDVR)
Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald, staff veterinarian at VCA Alameda East Veterinary Hospital, said a fur coat doesn’t mean these pets are immune to the cold.
“If it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for them,” Dr. Fitzgerald said. “It doesn’t take long to get frostbite. Frostbite happens in parts of the body where there’s a lot of surface area and not a lot of flesh underneath, the ears, the tip of the tail, the paws.”
These spots are usually discolored, cool to the touch and painful, he said.
“It’s yellow or blue at first,” Dr. Fitzgerald said, “but after a while, when the damage is really done, it can be really scaly and black, so these are areas of skin that are actually frozen.” and later died,” said Dr. Fitzgerald. . “Frostbite can take a while to reveal itself, so we have to pay attention.”
It’s important to limit outdoor exposure and check their paws after a quick trip outside for any salt or ice.
“Cold weather can exacerbate other conditions. Dogs with arthritis can be tougher in this weather,” Dr. Fitzgerald said. “Dogs with heart disease and respiratory problems get out into the cold air, which can really accentuate it and exacerbate the underlying problem.”
Danielle Sullivan told FOX31 she’s limiting her time outside with her three dogs until it warms up.
“You have to do it in short bursts and lots of short bursts because it’s unbearable for them, especially their paws,” Sullivan said. “It’s awful, but honestly we’ve had such a mild winter that I can’t complain yet but hopefully it’ll warm up soon.”
It’s also a good idea to check your car before starting it, Dr. Fitzgerald said, because cats sometimes climb up near the engine to keep warm.