Extreme colds pose danger for animals as well as people

Published: Dec. 22, 2022 at 6:19 PM CST
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - When it comes to keeping animals out in the winter, the advice so far is “if it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for them.”

TAPS animal shelter says they are completely full but they’ve had people come in to try and drop off animals.

Right now, they are calling on pet owners to take responsibility and bring their dog or cat indoors.

Their fur does provide some protection but even breeds built for the cold can still struggle in sub-zero temperatures.

TAPS executive director Holly Crotty says to call animal control if you see a stray or an owned animal out in the cold for extended periods of time.

“If you see an animal outdoors, please be their voice because they cannot save themselves and we really need to be their voice,” she said.

Livestock owners are also taking action these past few days to prepare for the sub-zero temps.

Livestock owner and Illinois Farm Bureau leader Tasha Bunting says the animals are self-sustaining for the most part.

Cows can produce enough heat to keep the barn safe. Chickens, pigs and other farm animals might need some help keeping warm.

But bunting says most of the work is supplying food, water and warm bedding.

“They’ll kinda hunker down in their own group and wait for it to pass like a lot of us will hope to do over the next couple of days,” she said.

Bunting says dairy farmers across the Midwest are likely taking steps to keep their animals toasty warm over the next couple of days.

The Illinois Farm Bureau doesn’t make specific recommendations for keeping livestock warm in the winter. They say every farmer does it differently.

For pet owners, if you need to take them outside, it’s recommended to keep trips outside short and to dry off and warm up your pets after being in the snow and cold.