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Keeping humans, pets safe in cold temperatures

By Jennifer Peryam • Jan 27, 2019 at 5:00 PM

Sub-zero temperatures pose a risk for hypothermia and frostbite and health officials and a veterinarian say it is imperative to keep humans and pets safe in these extremely cold conditions.

The Norwalk-area forecasts calls for temperatures to dip below zero Tuesday through Thursday night. In fact, Wednesday’s high is projected to be minus 4 and the low minus 13 — without the wind chill factor.

Dr. Walter Elrod, a Lima Memorial Health System emergency room director, discussed the difference between frostbite and hypothermia.

“Frostbite is when you get freezing of the cells in the toes, fingers, nose or ears, and hypothermia is when your entire body gets to a low core temperature,” Elrod said.

He advised people dress for the weather and not go outside if they don’t have to. People also should pay close attention to the elderly and young children, who are the most at risk.

Dr. Jackie Insko of Lima’s Midwest Animal Clinic provided safety tips for pets.

“Anytime it’s below freezing, it is not a good condition for pets. Now that we are down to sub-zero temperatures, I would keep pet’s exposure outside to a minimum,” Insko said.

In sub-zero temperatures dogs and cats have a potential of developing frostbite and owners should be aware deicer salt can be toxic to animals’ paws, she added.

“Pet owners don’t realize the susceptibility of pets to hypothermia and not being able to keep themselves warm,” Insko said.


©2019 The Lima News (Lima, Ohio)

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