Many dogs love being outside, regardless of whether it is rain or shine. They get the opportunity to run around, use up some energy, and have a little fun. The problem is, as humans, we need to make sure that our dogs are not put in harm’s way, especially when the winter arrives.

Dogs may be wearing a fur coat all of the time but that doesn’t mean they don’t get cold. Of course, if you are talking about a Siberian husky or Alaskan malamute, then the same principles may not apply at all times. Other dogs are acclimated to live indoors, may have thin coats, and need some extra protection from the cold weather.

This leads many people to wonder how cold is too cold for a dog. Typically, if the weather is above 45°F, any type of special weather outfit will not be necessary. If the temperature drops any lower, however, certain breeds that are more susceptible to cold will need additional protection.

Photo: Unsplash

If you have a dog with a thin coat of fur, a small breed, a senior, or a very young dog, consider the following: If the temperature is below 32°, make sure that they have on a coat or sweater. If the temperature is down to 20° or lower, you should look after the dog very carefully and make sure that they are not getting too cold. Even if the dog is able to take colder weather, it can still be too much for them.

Some dogs are going to be perfectly fine outside for a short amount of time in the cold. There are a few things to keep in mind to make sure that they are comfortable.

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1. If your dog has a thin body and fine hair, such as a whippet or Greyhound, a coat would be a good idea in cold weather.

Photo: Pixabay

2. Small dogs will also typically need a coat if they are going to play for an extended amount of time outside. This would also include puppies. Larger dogs can generate more body heat and a smaller dog may be in closer contact with the cold ground.

3. If you have an older dog, they may have a weak immune system and could need a coat to stay warm. They will be more comfortable if you keep them warm and you may need to take them inside sooner.

If you have a larger dog with a thicker coat, such as a golden retriever or a labrador, they will not typically need a sweater or coat to be in the snow. If they have long hair, check the dog to make sure that the snow isn’t accumulating and remove it if needed.

Photo: Unsplash

Another question that is sometimes asked is if dogs need boots outside. More than likely, the answer is no and it may even take away from some of their comfort. Here are some things to consider as exceptions.

1. You should protect the dog if it is injured. Keep any cuts and scrapes dry and clean. A boot on the affected paw may be necessary.

2. If de-icers are commonly used in your area, you can protect the dog’s paws by using booties. It is possible that the compounds within de-icers can burn their paws.

3. If you tend to be outdoors on long adventures with your furry friend, you may need to protect their paws further.

Photo: Pixabay

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The bottom line is, if your dog is getting too cold, they will likely show that they are getting cold. Watch for any shivering, whining, anxious behavior, or slowing down. If they start looking around for a warm place, take them inside and let them warm up.

The post How Do You Know If It’s Too Cold For Your Dog To Be Outside? appeared first on The Animal Rescue Site News.

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