Bring dogs indoors during winter; 15 Pontiac dogs suffered from frostbite this week – December 29, 2012

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Bring dogs indoors during winter; 15 Pontiac dogs suffered from frostbite this week

Saturday, December 29, 2012 4:02 AM EST

Of The Oakland Press; Twitter: @jerrywolffe

This bitter cold is dangerous for dogs left outside.

Animal Care Network Manager Pam Porteous said, with temperatures in single digits and not expected to get much above the teens at night, pet owners have a responsibility to make sure their animals don’t suffer frostbite from being left out in the cold.

“Bring your dogs inside the house,” she said. “We already are seeing dogs with frostbite.”

She said one dog’s toepads were frozen because he was chained and when the chain got tangled, he could not get into his doghouse.

“Last weekend alone, we found 15 dogs like that in the Pontiac area,” Porteous said Friday.

She said a dog needs a lot more than a doghouse to survive winter’s coldest punch.

Doghouses must be built several inches off the ground, of solid construction and “filled completely with straw so the dog can burrow into the straw and make a nest and keep warm.”

Dogs, especially those left outdoors, need to receive double their normal food so they can “bulk up” to resist the cold and survive winter.

“Any temperature below freezing for a dog is dangerous,” Porteous said. “If a dog is on the thin side going into winter and left outdoors, it will not survive.”

She said owners sometimes put burlap flaps on the opening of a dog house to keep out cold winds, but that doesn’t always work.

Contact Jerry Wolffe at 248-745-4612 or or follow him on Twitter @JerryWolffe1 or on Facebook.


To learn more or report an animal being abused, call the Animal Care Network at 248-678-2756.


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