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Humane Society Shares Tips On How To Keep Animals Safe And Warm This Winter

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As temperatures across the area dip into the single digits, the Broome County Humane Society is sharing some tips on how to make sure your pet is staying safe and warm this winter.

“We’re shivering when we go outside, so are the pets.”

Karen Matson, Executive Director at the Humane Society, said taking your pet on a shorter walk, cleaning the salt off of their paws, and checking them for frostbite are just some of the things you can do to keep your animals safe.

“If they have a short-coated dog, consider putting a sweater on him. For long-haired dogs, try not to shave them down in the winter. It acts as an insulation.”

With or without their coats, the shelter says animals burn more calories when trying to stay warm.

That means it’s crucial to feed pets a little extra during colder months, especially those who live outdoors.

“Some breeds are more susceptible to being outdoors, but it’s important that people know that the dog houses they have have to be insulated.”

Extra blankets and straw help to make dog houses warmer, but moving them inside is always the better option.

“Please consider putting them indoors. Put them in the garage, somewhere where it’s a little bit warmer and safer for them. If they must be outside, it’s critical that they protect them the best that they can with the proper insulation.”

With the cold weather so does the holiday season, when many families find themselves in over their head financially, and choose to get rid of their pets to save money.

“This time of year, people get desperate. They don’t have options, and as opposed to leaving them behind, which a lot of people do, they’re doing the right thing by calling and saying, ‘I have to move, I can’t afford the pet food any longer. Can you take my animal in?’ We do take them, and in this facility we are fortunate that we have more space.”

The shelter has enough space to hold their nearly 200 animals, consisting mostly of dogs and cats.

If you see a stray cat or dog in the cold, there are steps you can take to make sure that animal gets the help it needs.

“If a stray dog is seen, first thing they need to do is contact the dog control officer in their area, and that person can come and get the dog and either find the owner or take it to the shelter in which that town is contracted with. If it’s a stray cat, most importantly, check with your neighbors, see if they’re missing their pets. They can certainly call shelters and see if we’ve heard of pets that are missing, cats that are missing.”

The shelter sees 10 to 15 animals adopted per week, but there are always new pets coming in and looking for their permanent home.

“It’s always a revolving door with animals, but our goal is to get them in, get them healthy, and find them forever homes where they’re gonna stay put for the rest of their lives.”

The Humane Society is always looking for donations and volunteers. If you’re interested, visit their website by clicking here.