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Winter Hazards

Winter conditions in southern BC, particularly the Lower Mainland, can be mostly mild. There are times though when the temperatures drop below zero and we need to be mindful that our pets might just need to be mostly indoors. Our pets need access to fresh water at all times, so please make sure their water bowl is not frozen over if it is outside. Our pets need warm shelter at night and this may mean that our usual outdoor pet needs to stay indoors.

When temperatures bring ice and snow, please be mindful about the following products being used in and around your neighbourhood.


Pet safe antifreeze is available for purchase and we recommend using these products and telling others to also use them. However, you should not automatically assume that everyone is using a pet safe product for their own vehicles. Please be aware of puddles or slight dripping around cars and on roads/driveways/parking lots etc. Your pet may drink from these ‘sweet tasting’ puddles or lick their paws after walking through them. To be safe always wipe your pet’s feet after a walk with a warm wash cloth. Please note that ingesting antifreeze can cause acute renal failure and may present as lethargy, loss of appetite, and/or vomiting. Contact your Veterinarian immediately if you suspect poisoning from antifreeze.


In BC we do not use rock salt, but use de-icing products. Again, some are pet friendly and if you can use these products this will help alleviate ingestion by eating or licking of paws. After walks use a warm wash cloth to wipe your pet’s feet to get off any de-icing residue. Using gravel or sand may be an option for you, instead of using de-icing chemicals, however remember there is manual clean up afterwards to avoid runoff into drains and waterways.

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