How cold is too cold for your dog?
We all know dogs that love snow, and ones that hate snow. Some love the colder weather while some would rather curl up in front of the fireplace. But do you know how cold is too cold for your dog? Below we'll explore when you should be concerned and when to let them play on!
Just like us humans, cold can feel different for every dog. One dog might be shivering and shaking while the other is romping and playing like it's a sunny day! Watching your dog during a variety of temperatures will give you a better feel as to their level of comfort. Look for behaviors that indicate their too cold such as shivering, or avoidance of going outside.
Here are some main factors that go into a dog's ability to tolerate the cold:
Type of Coat:
Some pups just come better equipped for chilly weather. What might come to your mind immediately is a husky, or Newfoundland due to their big fluffy coats. Dogs with coats similar to these will be able to better withstand the cold and will enjoy to frosty air. A canine with a shorter or thinner coat might not be as apt to love snow. With coats such as these the body heat is not trapped as easily meaning the dog becomes cold easier.
Age and Health:
Puppies and older dogs will be more at risk of getting cold depending on their body's ability to regulate body temperature and health issues. You wouldn't leave a baby or an elderly person out in the cold so take the same approach with your pet! Cold weather can aggravate existing conditions such as arthritis in your older dog. If your pet has issues standing up or sitting down keep a close eye on them even on backyard bathroom trips as it can be icy on those patios!
Size of Dog:
Small dogs will have a lot lower cold tolerance than a large Bernese mountain dog. With small dogs being closer to the ground they're usually closer to a source of cold whether it be snow or rain! If your small dog has is short haired then they might not be a fan of the winter months.
Tips and Tricks:
Here's a list of products to check out that will help your dog stay warm on chilly days
As nice as it sounds to hole up in your house during the snowy season it's not possible with fido needing to go to the bathroom! Consider investing in a dog coat or jacket to help your pet hold in more of their body warmth. Dog booties are another good purchase to keep them warm, and also keep them from licking off dangerous substances such as road salt or antifreeze upon returning home.
If your dog does begin to shiver, whine, seems weak, or starts looking for places to burrow while outside quickly move them inside and wrap them in a warm towel and blanket. If you suspect your pet has hypothermia or frostbite, get them to the vet as soon as possible.
As always, if you ever have any concerns about your pet take them to the vet to have your questions answered. FurHaven is not responsible for any harm or injuries that happen to a pet due to cold weather. This info is only to be used as suggestions and not direct instructions.