Dear Readers: Temperatures are getting low in most parts of the country. Let's make sure our pets are safe and warm:
Salt and de-icer can do a number on dogs' paw pads. Wipe their feet whenever they come inside.
Frost-bite is a real concern. Don't let animals stay outside for long periods of time. And, if you can get your pet to wear them, booties can help keep feet warm. The dog may not go for them though.
Make sure there's a path for the dog to get outside to go potty. If not, they won't want to go.
Cats can seek out warmth anywhere. Bang on the hood of your car in the morning to get them to run off.
Bathing pets at this time is not a priority. The low humidity can dry out pets' skin.
Small pets can benefit from a sweater, again, if they will wear it.
Don't leave pets alone in the car. It's too cold and there's a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Doghouse rules: three closed sides, up off the ground and filled with straw or hay (blankets, carpets and towels retain moisture). No leaky roof, and foam padding around the inside will help keep your pet warm.
This information comes from the Kosciusko County Rural Electric Membership Corporation. — Heloise
Dear Readers: Meet Lexi (on top), a 3-year-old Malshi (Maltese and Shih Tzu blend), and Dolli, a 2-year-old Bichon Frise, playfully squished under the pillow. Owner Sandee H. in Winchester, Virginia, says they are such good buddies!
To see these two and our other Pet Pals, visit www.Heloise.com and click on "Pet of the Week." Do you have a funny and furry friend or two? Send us a picture and description to HeloiseHeloise.com, or like Sandee, mail in a pic to P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001. - Heloise
Neater Warm Candle
Dear Heloise: Has everybody figured this out but me? I use an aluminum muffin cup in my candle warmer to keep things neat. — Carey in Virginia
Dear Heloise: The trick for using loud music to get rid of raccoons in the attic reminded me how my deceased wife got rid of squirrels in our attic some 20 years ago. She, likewise, used music.
With her boom box at full volume, she played the 1812 Overture. More specifically, she blasted the squirrels away with the blasting cannons in the Overture. A classical solution. — David S.
Dear Heloise: I would like to share an idea I came up with today regarding my mask. None of these masks has a wire nose piece and therefore do not fit around my nose for the protection that I need.
I had a roll of floral wire and I cut it the length of each mask and ran it above the seam at top. Being fine wire, it went in with no difficultly at all. They fit really great. Every little bit of protection helps. — Jerry S. in Strasburg, Vir.
Bend, Stretch, Shower
Dear Heloise: Two for one: After each shower, I wipe it down with a sponge and, in the process, I will get my stretches and bends in without thinking about it, and always a clean shower. — Dot from Michigan
Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to HeloiseHeloise.com. I can't answer your letter personally but will use the best hints received in my column.
King Features Syndicate