JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Record breaking temperatures this week means it’s time to bundle up.
And if your dog spends most of their days in the backyard, pet experts are urging owners to bring them indoors.
“With temperatures this cold, especially with this wind chill, it is tough on dogs and cats especially down here in the South when they aren’t use to this weather,” said Dr. Spencer Mills.
According to PETA, just last winter there were at least 29 cold-weather related animal deaths reported.
That’s why Dr. Mills wants to warn pet owners about the dangers of leaving your backyard pup out in the cold.
“If you are too cold to be hanging out outside, then it is too cold for them too,” he said.
And don’t let your pet’s fur deceive you.
Dr. Mills says their coat isn’t enough to brace the freezing temperatures.
“A lot of people have this misconception that, ‘Dogs have fur, they are fine,' and they can tolerate it just a little better then us, but, honestly, we are about the same on that,” Dr. Mills said.
So if it’s not possible to bring your four-legged friend indoors, here’s what you can still do to protect them from the cold.
“If you can’t bring them inside, put them in the garage," suggests Dr. Mills. "That’s the next best thing. Cat house or dog house, make sure it has ample bedding and raise it a good bit off the ground. Also, turn it away from the wind.”
Debra Boswell says when it comes to outside pets, taking care of their needs isn’t only the right thing to do... it’s the law.
“Bare in mind, you are obligated by law as a pet owner to provide for them. You must provide adequate food, shelter, and water for your pet or you will be guilty of a misdemeanor and fined up to one-thousand dollars. It’s just that simple.”