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Symptoms to look for if your pet has been outdoors and you suspect it may be suffering from frostbite.
Ice on body and limbs
Tissues are bright red followed by pale color( vasoconstriction) to black color (death of tissue/ sloughing of skin)
Warm the affected area rapidly with warm water using towels or warmed ice packs.
If it is a limb or paw that is frozen, soak it only in a bath or bowl of warm water.
Dry gently after you have warmed the area.
Do not rub or massage the frozen tissue
Do not apply snow or ice
Do not immerse your pet completely in a bath this will cause the body temperature to decrease and cause hypothermia.
When the tissues are warmed it may cause some discomfort to your pet. The same also occurs when tissues are dead.
Wrap your pet in a blanket to prevent self-trauma and keep him or her warm.
Seek Veterinary care. Secondary infections can sometimes result from gangrene tissues.
Six Cold Weather Safety Tips for Dogs and Cats
By Sophia Yin, DVM, MS
"Brrrrrrrrr. With temperatures in some parts of the country hitting 20• or below, it’s pretty cold even for your household pets. Here are some tips for cold weather safety for dogs and cats.
Tip 1: In cold weather, most dogs and cats should be kept inside. Some long-haired double-coated dogs such as Alaskan Huskies can do well in freezing temperature if they have a well-enclosed dog house filled with clean insulating straw, are used to the cold weather, are not too young or too old, get a special high-calorie diet and are closely monitored while others with a more meager coat, inadequate shelter, inadequate diet or an inability to thermo-regulate efficiently will freeze or become hypothermic or develop frostbite, especially on the tips of their ears and tail.
Tip 2: Check your car before you start it. Cats are resourceful at finding warm places. So if left outside in the cold, they may hide under the hood of your car. As a result, when someone starts the motor, the cat gets injured or killed.
Tip 3: Remember the sweaters and jackets for short-haired dogs going on walks, especially if they spend time standing still. In general, if they are shivering outside or tucking their rear end and looking miserable and you’re cold and need a special winter coat, your thin-furred dog may need one too.
Tip 4: Avoid leaving pets in the car when it’s really cold. Without heating, the car turns into a virtual refrigerator.
Tip 5: Salt and other chemicals used to de-ice the streets can be irritating to your pet’s paws and if ingested can cause ulcers and irritation of the esophagus and mouth. So wash their feet and any other place you see salt with warm water when they come back in. If you train your dog to wear protective dog booties on walks, the booties will protect against the salt and can also help prevent foot injuries caused by running in sharp ice.
Tip 6: Don’t let pets eat snow. The snow can have toxic chemicals such as car antifreeze which can cause vomiting, kidney failure and death. If you catch your pet eating colored snow, take him to the vet for immediate care."