Provide adequate housing for animals

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During the winter months, please provide adequate housing for your outside dogs and cats. Their houses should be big enough that they can stand up in it and turn around. The house should be small enough for the dog’s or cat’s body heat to keep it warm.

This is their only way of generating heat/ They should have dry, padded bedding and shaving thick enough to insulate their bodies from the cold surface they lay on, such as plastic houses. Dog or cat carriers are not acceptable as housing under Lancaster County ordinances due to the holes that allow leaks.

Housing has to have four sides, a roof and a floor. This is the law in Lancaster County now. Leaving an outside dog to lie on the cold ground is not acceptable. Even in the winter, your dogs have to have water. If they knock it over all the time, consider a deeper bucket and place it inside an old tire so they can’t knock it over. Check your dog’s or cat’s water daily to make sure it isn’t frozen.

Place your dog’s house so that prevailing winds hit the back of the house, not the front, and make sure it doesn’t leak. Take care of your pets during the winter months. It’s the right thing to do. If you see dogs tied out in the cold without adequate shelter, please report the situation to Lancaster County Animal Control at (803) 286-8103.

Please know that if you report, efforts will be made to help the animal receive housing. Lancaster County Animal Control will be accepting public donations of gently used dog houses throughout the winter months and will assist local rescue groups in making sure all animals in need are warm and dry this winter season.

Bobbie Jean Mishoe