December 31, 2017 8:14 pm
Updated: December 31, 2017 8:15 pm

Regina Humane Society warns pet owners about cold weather


As extreme cold weather warnings continue across the province, the severe conditions are affecting everyone and pet owners are being asked to take precautions this winter.

Even when the temperature dips below -30 C, it doesn’t stop some dog owners from taking a trip to the dog park.

READ MORE: Saskatoon services keeping up with extreme cold weather

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“I’ve got fleece and feathers and fir, everything to keep warm,” dog owner Tanya Rogoschewsky said. “It doesn’t matter how cold it is — dogs still get pretty stir crazy if they’re cooped up.”

The Cathy Lauritsen Memorial Off-Leash Dog Park is usually packed, but the recent cold snap means less time outside.

“We stay about 20 minutes until he starts picking up his paws and then I’m like ‘OK, let’s go back, let’s go sit in front of the fireplace,” Rogoschewsky said.

READ MORE: Natural gas consumption record set in Saskatchewan

While some pets are tucked away safe at home, others aren’t so lucky. Since the cold spell began, it’s been a busy time for the Regina Humane Society.

“We’ve seen a lot more cats coming in,” Candace Davis, Regina Humane Society said. “Specifically, many of them have frozen ear tips or frozen paw pads, which our vets quickly deal with. We’ve seen a lot of dogs as well, coming in.”

The Regina Humane Society is also reminding pet owners that under Saskatchewan’s Animal Protection Act, it’s against the law to allow an animal to be in distress. That means providing adequate shelter sufficient for outside temperatures.

While some dogs are better suited for this type of weather, owners are being reminded to limit their times outdoors.

“In this temperature you know it’s outside to pee, back in,” Davis said. “Also, really short walks, I’d say five to 10 minutes max. If you are interested in going on a little bit longer of a walk, I’d say a max of 15 minutes.”

When it’s this cold outside, it doesn’t take long for frostbite to set in.

“In weather like this, within five to 10 minutes of being in an exposed and really windy area is enough to get some real damage,” veterinarian Dr. Lesley Sawa said.

Dogs also shouldn’t be left in vehicles with no heat and anyone who feels that an animal has been left outside for too long can contact animal protection sections.

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