As the temperatures drop across South Florida, area animal shelters remind pet owners to consider their pet's safety and well being during the cold season.
Pets should be kept indoors with a warm place to sleep on Friday and any time during a period of cold weather, especially puppies and senior dogs who do not tolerate cold as well as adult dogs.
If pets cannot be brought inside, they should be given access to proper shelter and bedding for warmth.
Even outdoor animals are required by law to have some type of shelter to protect them from the elements.
Miami-Dade County Animal Services also advises motorists to be aware cats, who often during cold weather will crawl underneath car hoods or into wheel wells to stay warm.
Motorists should always tap firmly on the hood of their cars and check between the tires to make sure a cat hasn't cozied up there trying to avoid the cold.
“It’s particularly important during inclement weather to consider the safety and comfort of outdoor dogs and to show compassion for the neighborhood cats,” said Alex Muñoz, Director of Animal Services.
"Here in South Florida, the cold air can be hard on pets who are used to warmer temperatures," said Dr. Tim Johnson, a veterinarian with the Broward County Animal Care and Adoption Division. "We recommend that all pets be brought inside to ensure their comfort. During walks, short-haired dogs may feel more comfortable wearing a sweater, since they can become easily chilled."