Winter ready: be caring

Find out how to care for your community during the winter months, including looking after animals, people and roads and pavements.

Look after your pets and wildlife during winter

Keep your small pets warm

Bring small pets inside for the winter. For example, into your porch, conservatory, shed or car-free garage.

If they're staying outside, place their hutch somewhere sheltered and provide extra bedding for warmth. The PDSA has advice on keeping small pets warm in winter.

Remember, if it's too cold for you, it's too cold for them. 

Clean your dog's paws and belly after a winter walk

The best thing to do is to thoroughly wipe your pet's feet, fur and tummy after they have been outside.

If you are concerned that your pet may have ingested rock salt, the RSPCA suggests that you contact your vet immediately and follow their advice.

winter bird feedingLeave out food and water for birds

Birds require high-energy (high-fat) foods during the cold winter weather to maintain their fat reserves to survive the frosty nights.

It's also a great way to stay connected with nature and get a wellbeing boost.

Tips for feeding birds:

  • During winter, put out food and water regularly.
  • In severe weather, feed twice daily if you can: in the morning and the early afternoon.
  • Only use good-quality food and scraps.

Volunteering in winter

This Christmas, give the gift of time. You can spread some festive cheer by supporting charities and organisations in your local community.  

christmas cat sleepingCats Protection

Bring some joy to our furry four-legged friends living in shelters this Christmas by volunteering with Cats Protection.

Cat care volunteers help feed, clean and spend quality time with the cats. If you think you're purr-fect for the job, find out how to volunteer for Cats Protection.


rough sleeping tentStreetLink

In cold snaps, sleeping rough can be more than just uncomfortable.

You can help by making StreetLink aware of rough sleepers. StreetLink will connect the homeless with the outreach services they need.


clearing snow from a pathClearing snow

Is stressing about being sued stopping you from shovelling snow?

You can clear snow and ice from pavements yourself as long as you follow government guidance on clearing snow and ice.


woman looking after older womanBefriending an older person

Over 2 million people over the age of 75 live alone, with over 200,000 saying they go a month without speaking to a friend or relative.

There's no time like the present to become an Age UK Suffolk Befriender.