Lansing, Michigan and the surrounding suburbs and towns are experiencing power outages due to an ice storm that hit this past Saturday and Sunday. It was a scary place to be since it seemed that every time someone went outside, another tree gave up its fight and came crashing to the ground – taking power lines with it!
While this is frightening for human beings, just think what this must be like for animals that can feel the environment down to their very core. They know that something is amiss, yet they are unable to do anything about it! They can only run and hide and hope that they survive the storm.
This is where it gets frightening for the human parent. If there is no power and escape from a home is imminent, what happens when the cat cannot be located?
If the cat is an outside cat, they could potentially be anywhere – including someone else’s residence – taking up shelter. Do you leave and leave the cat to fend for itself? Should you stay and put yourself in danger?
For those people that do not have a pet, this is a no brainer; they would escape and save themselves at once. However, for those of us that are pet parents, the scenario is not quite the same. All we can envision is our pet freezing to death because we took care of our needs in front of theirs.
Cat paws, like dog paws can freeze; frostbite is very painful. It is also painful when the pads stick to ice and rip open.
Cats also like to escape the cold and crawl up into a warm engine bed; another very dangerous thing. Cats that do this get gravely injured while some even die after getting caught in the fan belt. In order to protect your heart and your outdoor cat, always knock on the hood before entering the vehicle and starting it, giving the feline a moment to crawl down and out to safety.
Many outdoor cats will not allow you to catch them and put them in a crate to transport them to safety. All the cat parent can to at this point is to provide as much protection as possible; making certain that they have placed straw or hay in a well-concealed area along with extra food and what water that they possibly can (although water will be sure to freeze). After that it is a matter of praying that your pet survives the storm. You most certainly have to look out for yourself first so that you will be there later on to help your pet survive.
Hopefully, with a little luck and a lot of dedication, the electricity will be repaired and all people and their pets will be safe and secure before Christmas. Merry Christmas! You are in our thoughts.