Remember, if it's too cold for you, it's probably too cold for your pet, so keep your animals inside. If left outdoors, pets can freeze, become disoriented, lost, stolen, injured or killed. In addition, don't leave pets alone in a car during cold weather, as cars can act as refrigerators that hold in the cold and cause animals to freeze to death.
If there are outdoor cats, either owned pets or community cats in your area, they need protection from the elements as well as food and water. It's easy to give them a hand by providing a cat shelter. For instructions on how to build a shelter, go to Alley Cat Allies website.
Cars are one of many hazards to small animals, as warm engines in parked cars attract cats and small wildlife, who may crawl up under the hood. To avoid injuring any hidden animals, bang on your car's hood to scare them away before starting your engine.
A passing snowplow can also be hazardous by throwing snow high enough to bury a cat wandering by. When you see a cat or dog roaming freely outside in freezing temperatures or heavy snow, please take action to protect or rescue that animal.