These Rockford area Girl Scouts earned their Polar Girl Award on January 31 and February 1. All 16 girls spent the night outside in tents – in two feet of snow with overnight low temperature of 12 degrees. They were joined by 11 adults, with seven adults choosing to sleep outside too. Everyone enjoyed snowshoe hiking and trying creative ways to cook over a fire, even learning how to use their cell phones to start the fire. They also brought along their local paper, The Rockford Squire. Some of those attending were: Stephanie Barton, Sarah Barton, Jennifer Bell, Kathleen Bell, Abigail Beuregard, Nicki Bouwkamp, Yvonne Bouwkamp, Jessica Dickinson, Bev Dickinson, M. Ek, Sarah Ek, H. Fedorchuk, Jill Fitzhugh, C. Fisher, Kaitlynn, Kimmel, Maria Kimmel, Amanda Perry, Susan Perry, K. Savara, Julie Savara, Kayleigh Scherzer, Porta Schut, Alayna Surdock, Lynn Surdock, Rachel Turner, Jane Turner, Amanda Zeboor, Amy Zeboor.
by SAM HYER Pets need more than just a fur coat to keep warm and safe in winter. Cold weather has safety and health concerns for both people and pets. As a responsible owner, it is important to pay attention to your pet’s well-being during the cold Michigan winter. The American Kennel Club® and I, offer the following advice to help you and your pet survive the long, cold winter. Provide plenty of fresh water – Your dog is just as likely to get dehydrated in the winter as in the summer, and snow is not a satisfactory substitute for water. Provide plenty of food – Feed your dog additional calories if it spends a lot of time outdoors or is a working animal. It takes more energy in the winter to keep body temperatures regulated, so additional calories are necessary. Dogs that are kept indoors with the family, and get less exercise during winter months, may actually gain weight, so keep an eye on his diet. Keep your dog’s paws dry – Rinse your dog’s feet and dry them completely after a walk. This helps avoid tiny cuts and cracked pads. A little petroleum jelly may soften the pads and prevent further cracking. Groom your dog regularly – Your dog needs a well-groomed coat to keep properly insulated. Towel or blow-dry your dog if he gets wet from rain or snow. When you towel your pet be sure to blot, not rub, as that can lead to severe matting. Comb out your pet more often in the winter to keep the skin healthy. Keep your dog warm, dry, and away from drafts – Adequate shelter is a necessity. Tiles and uncarpeted areas may become extremely cold. Place blankets and pads on floors in these areas. Watch out for the following winter hazards: Cold – Don’t leave your dog outside for long periods of time. Wind/chill makes days colder than actual temperature readings, and dogs are susceptible to frostbite on their ears, tails, and feet. Ice and snow – Be extra careful when walking or playing with your dog outside. Your pup could slip or jump in a frozen lake, river, or pond and get seriously injured. Snow can muffle scents, and your dog can […]
Earlier this month, Brittany Fels had the pleasure of visiting her grandmother, Ruthe Graves of Rockford. Brittany just graduated from California State University, San Marcos with her bachelor’s degree in accounting. She decided to visit her grandmother before she started her new job back in California. Brittany used to come to Rockford every summer when she was younger, but before this trip, it had been about six years since she last visited. Brittany and her grandmother drove through downtown Rockford several times and stopped at her favorite coffee shop, Frenz, quite a few times as well. The weather here was very different than what Brittany is used to in California. Being a California girl, she doesn’t see much snow, and hardly ever gets to go sledding! ? On her last day here, she took her mom’s old plastic sled and went down the small hill in her grandmothers’s front yard a few times. She loved ?it, and her grandma got a few good pictures of her enjoying herself.