If it’s too cold for you outside, it’s too cold for your pet!
I do hope that I’m preaching to the choir, but this article will be about protecting our outside pets. Ideally, all pets are indoor pets, but this is not always the case.
When night time temperatures drop below 40̊, actions must be taken to ensure that there is adequate shelter for any animal that spends the night outside.
There are many instructions on the internet on using a Styrofoam cooler as a shelter for cats that can’t be brought in. They are used in managed feral colonies. Simply turn it upside down and make a hole in the side big enough for a cat to enter. If you have access to straw, that is the perfect bedding because it will dry out faster than a towel. Put in a likely place and put a paving block or a couple of bricks on top to weigh it down.
Dogs that are not permitted to come in the house (don’t get me started on that!), must have a warm place to get in out of the weather. A dog house is typical and igloos are better. Both must have bedding inside to keep the dog warm. If possible, use a light inside to generate warmth. You can also get pet heating pads. Please don’t put it in the back corner of the yard! Put it where the dog can see activity in the house. A warm place in the garage is another option with a dog.
Horses left outside with no barn access, should be blanketed. Even in a barn, when the temperature is in the low 40s or below, the horse should be blanketed. A horse will survive, but will be most uncomfortable. If you have a horse, you should be prepared to keep it warm in cold weather.
A good rule to remember – if it’s too cold for you outside, it’s too cold for your pet!
Stay warm. Stay safe.