Ensuring the well-being of dogs and cats during winter is crucial, as cold weather can pose significant risks to their health and safety. Here are the top ten tips to help keep your pets safe and comfortable during the colder months:

For Dogs:

  • Keep Them Warm: Provide a warm, cozy bed away from drafts. Smaller, short-haired, or older dogs may need a sweater or coat when going outside.
  • Paw Protection: Use paw balm (e.g. Sensiderm Balm link to the website) to protect their paws from cold surfaces, salt, and de-icing chemicals. Regularly check and clean their paws after walks.
  • Limit Outdoor Time: Shorten walks in extremely cold weather and never leave your dog outside for long periods. Be mindful of their tolerance to cold.
  • Hydration and Nutrition: Ensure they have access to fresh, non-frozen water. Dogs may require more calories in the winter to maintain their energy and body heat.
  • Beware of Antifreeze: Keep them away from antifreeze, which is toxic but appealing to pets. Clean up any spills immediately.

For Cats:

  • Keep Them Indoors: Cats are safer and warmer indoors. Outdoor cats can freeze, become lost, or be injured. Provide stimulating indoor activities.
  • Check Under the Hood: Cats may seek warmth under car hoods. Bang on the bonnet or toot your hooter before starting the engine to give them a chance to escape.
  • Warm and Cozy Bed: Provide a warm, snug place for your cat to sleep, away from drafts. Heated cat beds or blankets can offer additional warmth.
  • Monitor Food and Water: Ensure they have access to fresh, unfrozen water. Like dogs, some cats may need more food in the winter, as they expend more energy to stay warm.
  • Avoid Toxic Substances: Keep them away from antifreeze and other winter chemicals. Wipe their paws and fur if they come into contact with substances from outside.

General Tips for Both:

  • Regular Vet Check-ups: Winter can exacerbate certain health issues like arthritis. Regular check-ups can help in managing these conditions.
  • Emergency Kit: Have an emergency kit ready with essentials like food, water, medication, and warm blankets in case of power outages or severe weather.
  • Identification: Ensure your pet has proper identification, such as a microchip or collar with ID tags, in case they get lost.
  • Grooming: Regular grooming is important but avoid shaving or cutting their hair short during winter as their coat provides warmth.
  • Awareness of Limits: Recognise your pet's tolerance to cold. Factors like age, breed, and health affect how well they can withstand cold temperatures.


By following these tips, you can help ensure your fur-baby's stay safe, healthy, and comfortable throughout the winter season.