Officials remind pet owners to keep their dogs and cats safe from the cold weather

Officials remind pet owners to keep their dogs and cats safe from the cold weather (File Photo).

The temperature is dropping. With these low temperatures, law enforcement officials and veterinarians are warning pet owners to make sure their dogs and cats are safe.

Some pets are alright in the cold weather, but others may not make it.

"There was a little young puppy that got accidentally left outside. They didn't realize it and he just passed on," said Dr. Laveta Bryan, Veterinarian.

Dr. Bryan has been a veterinarian for 30 years. She says each dog requires different care. Some dogs, like huskys, are meant to be in cold weather, but others do not do so well.

"If you have a small dog that is slender, maybe thin, or an older dog and doesn't have much hair coat, then they really don't need to be left outside," said Bryan.

She says if someone has a dog that is ok in the cold, they still have to make sure there is a place for it that is blocked by the wind. She says some type of dog house is necessary.

Bryan also says to check outdoor water bowls because they can freeze. And food is important.

"They are burning those calories just generating heat, so they may need more, but really you don't want to get them fat," Bryan said.

There are fines for not following these tips.

"At Canyon PD, our animal control officer answers several of these calls every year," said Chief Dale Davis, Canyon Police Department. "As a matter of fact today I did check on an animal myself coming back from lunch."

Law states that a dog must not be left outside and unattended by use of restraint if the temperature is below 32 degrees. Chief Davis says cruelty to nonlivestock animals is a Class A Misdemeanor and they take it seriously.

"We want to make sure that our citizens take care of their animals and if they don't, we're prepared to work a case," said Davis.

He says to call the police department if you see a dog that is unsafe and not being cared for properly.

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