The recent death of two dogs at a Rhinelander from exposure.. has prompted caution from an animal rights group.

People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals spokesperson Andrea Adelman  says pets should be protected from the cold...

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They've had a cockroach, snakes and sheep and, of course, cats and dogs. Pioneer Lake Lutheran Church at Church Road in Conover is hosting the 10th annual Pet Blessing.

Event coordinator Bill Green says if you have a pet, or not, to stop by....

"...The pastor does a blessing and there's a little bit of music, some songs, the dogs howl and know it's a hoot, it's a real hoot..."

Green says the event is held under a tent, so weather isn't a factor.

He says pictures are taken of the many pets that are blessed...

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The cold weather means precautions for pets and animals who live outside.

WXPR's Pet Talk expert, Dr. Ron Reupert says dogs living outside have special cold-weather needs...

"....good shelter, insulated usually, door may not be necessary, a door that closes, but a door that is facing south out of the wind and water that won't freeze or using a tank heater for their water bowls. Extra food, they'll burn more calories just maintaining their body heat even when they aren't exercising much...."

Keeping Warm a Challenge for Some Animals

Jan 5, 2014
Aonghus Flynn

With temperatures expected to stay well below zero for several days, humans are not the only ones suffering.  Animals kept outside may also be having a hard time. 

Dr. Ron Reupert at Animal Health Care Center North in Rhinelander says most pet owners know how to take care of their animals.  But he says many dog breeds like hounds aren’t built for weather this cold. 

“Short haired dogs I have seen not do well.  If they are kept outdoors, they need to have a supplemental heat source, and a lot of people do do that.”

Giving a pet as a holiday gift could result in a problem if the person getting the animal hasn't approved it.

Oneida County Humane Society Director Bria Swartout talked with Ken Krall about giving pets as gifts.

Experts ask anyone thinking of giving a pet as a gift to remember it will be a 10 to 15 year commitment to the animal.

Cats Crowd Humane Society

Nov 21, 2013
Natalie Jablonski / WXPR News

The Oneida County Humane Society has too many cats.  It’s running a discount on adopting adult cats to try and get some of them into homes before the holidays. 

“We come in at about eight in the morning, give them their canned food treat…”

Director Bria Swartout leads me into the humane society’s cat community room, where about sixty cats of all colors and sizes share space.  About thirty more are down the hall, being checked in or getting medical care.  Swartout says the shelter has been over capacity since May.

Pete Markham

Oneida County Humane Society is hosting an event to show how dogs and cats given a second chance can become good pets and maybe get adopted. 

The program is in conjunction with the McNaughton Correction Center in Lake Tomahawk. Organizer Maggie Hogan talks to News Director Ken Krall about the program.