The British Veterinary Association (BVA) has said that pet owners should take extra precautions to ensure dogs, cats and other small pets are kept safe from hidden and potentially fatal hazards as temperatures plummet
BVA president Daniella Dos Santos said that plummeting temperatures and snowy conditions call for extra precautions to keep pets safe and warm.
She said: “Dogs and cats should have easy access to shelter and warmth out of the cold, and while dogs will still need exercise, it’s advisable to walk them for shorter periods than usual. Antifreeze is a huge hazard for cats, so contact your vet immediately if you see signs of poisoning such as vomiting, depression, lack of coordination, seizures and difficulty breathing.
“Domestic rabbits and guinea pigs are also vulnerable to hypothermia despite their warm coats, which is why owners need to be vigilant and take steps to ensure their hutches are protected from the snow, cold draughts and winter rain.
“If owners have any concerns about their pet in this cold weather, they should consult their local vet for advice.”