Courtesy photo/Friends of Wharton, Texas Animal Control

Irina (light colored dog) doesn’t mind sharing a sofa with another canine, who will be under the care of Wharton animal control officials during the cold snap that began on Thursday, Feb. 11. Freezing temps are forecast to continue early next week.

As of Friday, Feb. 12, the first of three storm systems are expected to approach Wharton County and dip the mercury into the teens, according to the City of Wharton’s Office of Emergency Management. 

The near freezing temps began the day before, but OEM Coordinator Steve Johnson said it’s expected to get colder this weekend and into the work week next week.

“The first system, which developed (Friday) is forecast to have impacts on roadways and pipes since there is a possibility of experiencing freezing temps from late Sunday to early Monday until mid-day Tuesday. This is an extended period of below freezing weather,” Johnson said. “We are forecasted to receive freezing rain, sleet, snow or a combination of the three starting Sunday into Tuesday. Since the temps are forecast to be below freezing, melting and runoff are not expected to occur and the ground will be cold enough to support accumulations.”

These freezing temps pose a danger not only to residents, but pets also, said law enforcement and animal control officials. 

The Wharton Police Department recommends that pets be brought in while freezing temperatures befall our area,” said Det. Ariel Soltura. “Should we determine that a pet owner refuses to do so, we will investigate the matter and their actions, or lack thereof, could result in the filing of criminal charges against them.” 

He said pet owners must always act in the pet’s best interest.

“We’re hopeful that those within our city will do just that,” added Soltura.

Barry Hodges, who is with Friends of Wharton, Texas Animal Control said pets are like people.

“It’s always best to bring any pet inside during a cold snap like this. They get cold just like humans. If that is not an option make sure the pet has some sort of shelter from the harsh weather. They need to stay dry. Put out heat lamps , blankets or what ever is needed to keep the pet warm.

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