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SkyWarn13 Weather Alert: Heavy accumulations of wet snow likely for the Northern Chippewa Valley

ONLY ON SUNRISE: Winter safety for pets

Remember to clean the paws of your pets when coming in from outside. The salt from sidewalks and roads can irritate the pad of their feet.

(WEAU) - It’s a winter wonderland across the Chippewa Valley, as many of you are waking up to more snow on the ground and colder temperatures. But with this type of weather comes to the concern of how to keeps pets safe from the elements.

Snow is all around us, but for this fun loving pup that means he is at risk to the elements like the cold.

"The biggest thing we see problems with is their feet,” says Dr. Jodi Bohl with the Eau Claire Animal Hospital.

Dr. Bohl says pets are like us, which means they too can even experience dehydration, frostbite or hypothermia.

"It’s important when they come back in, either you put booties on them, protect their coverings when you go out or when they come back in make sure you rinse their feet off really well,” explains Bohl.

It’s something Jamie Wagner with Dunn County Humane Society has seen before.

"I pulled up one morning a few years ago, and there was a dog frozen. It was still alive and everything put its paws were frozen. It was just tied to a tree. Their ears can freeze, their tales can freeze, their paws can freeze, so it’s really important to try and get them in and out as soon as possible,” says Wagner.

"If they haven't been outside a lot, then you want to make sure, especially short coated animals, dogs mainly, they have some sort of sweater or covering,” says Bohl.

Plus pet owners should watch out for salted sidewalks and roads.

"Those chemicals can get in between the pads of their feet and then its irritating, so they're likely to lick them, explains Bohl.

Remember too that even though its cold out, pet owners should still take their dogs for walks to get the proper exercise.

“If you can instead of longer walks, maybe go more frequent shorter walks. If it’s too cold for you, it’s probably too cold for them,” says Bohl.

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