Deep Freeze

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We're right in the middle of a cold spell, so in order to keep our water flowing we must think ahead.

"To prevent the pipes from freezing, keep a slow drip....keep cabinets open if at all possible use a fan to get some back into the area," says David Mapes, owner of Mapes Plumbing and Heating.

Mapes says even though he'll respond to frozen pipe calls, he says we can fix the problem ourselves.

"Strictly use a handheld dryer or use a fan."

But it's not just our pipes at risk during the winter months. So are our animals. Veterinarian Megan Schirger says it's very common for pets to get hypothermia or frost bite during this time of year. And the best way to prevent that is keep them indoors. But one of Schirger's biggest concerns is an animals exposure to toxins like salt and antifreeze.

"Signs of that could be drunkenness they're gonna walk really wobbly they could have just from the bad taste a lot of drooling and saliva coming from their mouths," she says.

And if that happens, Schirger says bring them to the emergency room. Now if an animal is left outside for a long period of time, wipe down their legs and belly. And make sure to refresh their water every time it freezes over.

If you park outside, you might want to bang on the hood before starting your car. Cats tend to hide out there. So you want to give the cat a chance to escape before any accidents happen.

The winter months are also the most common time for dogs to runaway, so make sure they're wearing dog tags at all times. And one more note, early word from the Rockford Public Schools is that classes **will** be in session on Monday.