Experts offer tips to pet owners as temperatures continue to drop below freezing

MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - As temperatures continue to drop into the low teens, experts are warning pet owners of the dangers during the frigid winter months. Here are a few tips to make sure your pet can remain safe from the elements.

"Any type of garage, carport to shield them from that wind. Make sure they have a nice, new fresh bedding and you can also put some clothes on him like we have on scout here. And keep those pets warm over the next few days," veterinarian Tyson Pompelia said.

Dr. Pompelia is the owner of The Collinsville Veterinary Clinic. He says, just like people, dogs can suffer from similar conditions due to the cold, such as hypothermia and even frostbite.

"What you would see, what would be some shivering, shaking, uncontrollable tremors, things of that nature," Dr. Pompelia said.

But, practicing these safety tips can prevent that level of danger.

"If you do simple stuff to get them out of the wind and cold then I doubt you'll see any of that," Dr. Pompelia said.

Buying your furry pet some clothes - such as this vest can help shield your animal from the chilly winds. Dr. Pompelia guarantees the garments are comfortable and safe for your pets.

"So this is scout. He has a simple shirt on. A blanket that has a little bit of cushion in there. It has some furry stuff on it just to keep him out of that wind from just getting chilled as bad," Dr. Pompelia said.

Pompelia also suggests to check the bedding every couple of days to make sure it's not wet because wet bedding can make it colder for pets on freezing nights. Also, block the wind by adding a removable door to trap the heat inside. They even make heat lamps designed specifically to keep pets warm.

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals suggested these tips for people to take in account over the season.

Never shave your pet down to the skin during the winter. Also, bathe your pet as little as possible, allowing essential oils that prevent dry skin to stay. Lastly, consider feeding your pet more often during cold weather. They burn more energy trying to stay warm.

For more tips visit the ASPCA website.