TERRE HAUTE, IN. (WTHI) Bundling up is always an option when temperatures get low, but what about our furry friends? Whether you have an outdoor or indoor pet, being cautious of temperatures can save your pet's life.
"Hypothermia and frostbite can happen very quickly," said Megan Holscher-Bilyeu, office manager at the Airport Veterinary Clinic.
She has worked at the clinic for 17 years. During her time, she has seen her fair share of frostbite and hypothermia.
She said one common mistake pet owners make is putting clothes on their pet for warmth but not making sure they stay dry.
"So many people put sweaters or coats on their pets, and they let them go outside, and those sweaters and coats get wet and that can really cause a pet's body temperature to plummet quickly," said Holscher-Bilyeu.
If your pet stays outdoors, it's important they have an enclosed shelter during the winter months, she explained. Signs of hypothermia include shivering and a dramatic decrease in their activity. A sign of frostbite is discoloration on your pet's feet pads.
If your pet goes outside when there is snow or ice on the ground, experts say to check your pet's paws afterward.
"If it's snowy or icy outside, pets can go outside and get snow and ice stuck between the pads of their feet and people don't think to look there when they bring them inside," said Holscher-Bilyeu.
Even if your pet goes inside, ice left in between the pads of their feet can still lead to frostbite. If your pet is showing signs of hypothermia or frostbite, you should take them to a veterinarian.