Protecting Animals From Frostbite

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Last week at this time, we were trying to shield ourselves from dangerously cold temperatures and wind chills. A week has passed, but some in KELOLAND are still trying to recover.

Right now, the Sioux Falls Area Humane Society is busy caring for animals who were injured in the cold.

“When they’ve been coming in now, we’ve been checking their ears and pads for frostbite,” Humane Officer Andy Oestriech said.

Last weekend’s temperatures in the 20s and 30s below zero may be behind us, but some animals at the Sioux Falls Area Humane Society are still recovering.

The shelter took in four animals with frostbite over the past week.

“A lot of people think, ‘Animals with fur, they’re protected.’ They’re not. Dogs can get their pads; cats can get their feet, their ears. That weather was really tough,” Oestreich said.  

Humane Officer Andy Oestrich says frostbite can be hard to detect at first, but some of the telling signs may be thick or discolored paws and ears.

“It’s not something you can fix once the tissue’s damaged,” Oestreich said.

If you see an animal that needs some relief from the cold, you should notify authorities or an area shelter.

“If you’re talking a stray, and it happens to wander up, either put it in your garage or call right away. We can usually get someone out there pretty fast,” Oestreich said.

That’s one way you can help this shelter, help the four-legged members of the community.

The Sioux Falls Area Humane Society is always in need of foster families. You can find an application on the shelter’s website.

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