Although pets are covered in hair, fur, and the like, that is not usually sufficient to fend off the cool temperatures of winter. As a general rule, if you’re cold, they’re cold. And since the chilly days are here in many parts of the country, it’s a must to take extra precautions to keep four-legged buddies cozy. Here are some things you can do.

1. Keep them inside the house

A sudden temperature change, warmer or cooler, can be difficult for pets. Discipline your furries to adapt to living indoors before winter arrives.

keep pets warm during winter

2. Prepare shelter

If indoor living is a no-go, build your pet a sturdy, comfy outdoor shelter to stay in. Of course, they need protection from the extreme temperature. Keep their shelter warm, dry and as draft-free as possible.

3. Dress them up

Pet shirts, coats, or even shoes can keep your furry pets warm. Some pets love clothing and accessories while other hate them. Make sure that they feel comfortable putting these things on. Don’t force it.

3. Be aware of hypothermia and frostbite symptoms

Hypothermia and frostbite are caused by too much exposure to the cold. With hypothermia, your pet’s body temperature drops and they begin to experience violent shivering, muscle stiffness, problems with breathing, lack of appetite, and weak pulse. This could lead to cardiac arrest and coma. If you recognize the symptoms of hypothermia, wrap your pet in a warm coat or blanket and bring them to a warmer room, maybe near a fireplace or heater, and call a vet immediately.

Your pet’s tail, paws, and ears are especially susceptible to frostbite. Pale or blue skin is the first sign, which will eventually turn red and puffy or shriveled and cold. Once touched, the affected area can cause pain to them. If you recognize these symptoms, also call your vet immediately.

With a little extra preparation, you can keep your four-legged pals safe and warm during winter.