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Tired of winter? It’s still January, and we all know that there will be lots more of the cold and snow to come.

As you stay warm and cozy in your home, please be aware of your pets’ needs in these freezing temperatures. Do not leave your dog tethered to a tie-out for any length of time. They may have fur, but they are not equipped to handle subzero weather conditions for more than a quick in and out.

Don’t get so comfortable that you decide to just open the front door and let your dog outside. He may decide to go exploring or wander off and get disoriented in the snow and cold.

It’s possible that a snow and ice cover on yards and sidewalks distorts familiar scents that your canine companion uses to sniff his way back home. This week alone the Beatrice Animal Shelter has had several stray dogs brought into the facility.

They were not properly identified or microchipped, so there was no way to get them back home. However, these pets were very fortunate to have been brought to the shelter where they will be fed and cared for and be safe and warm. And maybe they will be better off in a new “forever” home.

Also, keep the winter conditions in mind when you take your dog with you in the car. You know the dangers of leaving a pet in the car during the warm spring and summer months, but falling temperatures can also be dangerous. Would you want to spend any time sitting in a cold car in this kind of weather? Neither does your dog.

Shady, Rudi, and Opie

You may recall the story of a shelter cat named “Shady." Shady was hit by a car and had to have a front leg amputated. She was an otherwise beautiful, healthy cat who was looking for a home.

Now we are happy to report that Shady has been adopted. And would you believe she is in a family that has another three-legged feline?

Perhaps you saw a picture of our new shelter manager, Carlee Fiddes, on the front page of this newspaper a few weeks ago. Carlee was holding a sweet little black and white puppy named “Rudi” who was looking for his forever home.

Rudi was recently adopted by a wonderful family with three young girls who are already spoiling him. This pup, now known as “Murphy," has truly hit the doggie lottery.

Rudi and Shady have found their homes, but there are many other wonderful animals that are dreaming of their adoption day.

One such guy is "Opie,"a young adult Great Pyrenees mix that was relinquished by his owner. Opie loves everyone and is very easy-going. If you would like to meet this handsome boy, stop in at the shelter during regular business hours.

Pets and Politics

Pet lovers in Nebraska need to take note of what’s happening in our state legislature. Sen. Sara Howard and Sen. Anna Wishart have introduced legislation that will positively impact our companion animals.

Sen. Howard is sponsoring a bill that would restrict the tethering of pets in inclement weather. Sen. Wishart’s bill would create a specialty license plate that would be sold with the proceeds going to support low income spay/neuter grant programs. These two bills will be worth following.

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