MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As we prepare for snow and dangerously cold weather, veterinarians are urging pet owners to make sure their furry friends are protected from the winter storm.

Minnesota has laws when it comes to animals and severe weather.

For example, state law requires owners to provide proper shelter for their pets. The shelter must be waterproof, have a protected entrance and have adequate space for the animal. The shelter also needs sufficient, non-absorbent bedding to keep it warm.

Veterinarians say even healthy animals are at risk of frostbite or hypothermia, which can cause permanent damage.

“These little animals that can’t help it, like little miniature pinschers or little dogs like that, where they brought them in and they were comatose because they were so cold and they’re just out and some of them don’t make it,” said Dr. Shawn Hook, a veterinarian. “Don’t let them out too long because you could regret it.”

Pet owners are encouraged to bring any outdoor pets inside for during Sunday’s storm.

If you see a pet outside without shelter tomorrow, you’re asked to call police.