Urgent bark-out from Champ

Published 4:21 pm Wednesday, January 6, 2010

You think YOU are freezing to death in this weather, well, think&bsp; about the animals! &bsp;

These prolonged sub-freezing temps are life threatening for animals kept outside, and they need YOUR help to survive!

Here is what they need to keep them alive during this cold snap:

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Water. We animals need water, not ice, several times a day. Preferably warm to help warm up (would YOU want to sit outside and drink ice cold water right now?) Please remember the birds and put&bsp; out some water in a shallow pan for them too.&bsp; It is so much better for them to drink water YOU put out — one of my buddies at the rescue in Mississippi, Tippy, is having seizures, and the vet thinks&bsp; it is because he drank from puddles in the yard that had&bsp; blue-green algae in them, or standing water could have antifreeze in it, both of which are deadly to animals.

Food.&bsp; In this cold, we all burn extra calories to keep warm, so&bsp; please give the animals more food than usual.&bsp; That goes for ALL of us animals, birds, and even humans who have to be out in the cold! (Pizza is good.&bsp; Pizza is ALWAYS good, but only in addition to normal food!&bsp; Did I ever mention how much I like pizza?)

Shelter from the weather, including the wind, and insulation. Dens made from hay bales help hold in body heat, and are cheap, easy and recyclable. Igloo dog houses with blankets are useful. Inside a&bsp; heated house or garage is even better (Despite my glorious, thick fur, I am a big fan of fireside naps and warm indoor beds!)!&bsp; And you can insulate plastic storage bins for cats and small dogs.

Exercise will help move our blood so we dont get so stiff and achy. I hate to think how miserable it would be to be chained outside in this weather, unable to get out of the wind and cold.&bsp; &bsp;

Please, take them for a walk (on a leash!). Then put them in a barn or shed with hay and blankets – or better yet, bring them inside!

If you need help with dog or cat food, call Foothills Humane Society at 828-863-4444.&bsp; The staff there is terrific and can help you.&bsp; &bsp;

And if you have a little extra, and would like to donate food to help the hungry animals, the shelter can get it to where its needed.&bsp; Give them a call and be a lifesaver.

This weather is deadly, but with a little extra care, all the animals can survive.

WOOF! (brrrrr!)