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Taking care of pets in the cold weather

Winter brings its share of ills for dogs and the cold weather affects dogs in most of the same ways that it affects their owners. Pets can be struck down with tired muscles and even arthritis. Some dogs are more prone to weight gain during winter because they are generally exercised less. It’s also important to watch the usage of winter toxins like antifreeze or car radiator fluid as these contain ethylene glycol which can cause kidney failure. Follow these top tips from Dr. Lisa Chimes to keep your furry friend in top health this season:

- Pets are less active in winter, which can make them prone to weight gain – ensure you monitor their diet and feed them for their ideal body weight.

- Signs of arthritis can be worse in the cold weather – help your pet out with gentle daily exercise and physiotherapy at home.

- Be careful of antifreeze (often present in radiator fluids) – it causes fatal kidney failure in dogs and cats if ingested.

- Pet coats/jackets can be helpful for small dogs and elderly animals that really feel the cold. Plus they look very cute!

- Remember that ticks can be present in some areas of Australia all year round, so don’t let your guard down just because it’s winter.

Dr Lisa Chimes is a qualified Veterinarian, and well known as the co-presenter of the popular TV show ‘Bondi Vet’. Lisa also treats all manner of small animals ay Sydney’s SASH hospital. Follow Lisa on Twitter

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