In winter the temperatures can be dangerous for dogs. So dog owners are advised to monitor their dogs’ body conditions. Dogs usually show signs when feeling cold. Those signs include cracked or bleeding paws. Cracked paws are an indication of cold weather injury.
So, when is it too cold to take your dog for a walk?
Though dogs differ from human beings, it makes sense to determine extreme weather conditions yourself. If you cannot take a walk for a long time due to cold, neither ca the dog. If the walk is really necessary, keep the dog warm by getting her some kind of a jacket. This way she will be warm enough to take a walk with you.
Here are general guidelines that you can use to determine safe weather temperatures for a dog.
- Temperatures of over 75 degrees Fahrenheit in the sun, is not good for the dogs with thick fur. It is too hot to even leave a dog inside the car. This weather can only be good for those dogs with fine hair coat.
- When the weather is between 32 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit is the best weather for dogs.
- If the weather is between 20 to 32 degrees Fahrenheit, the small dogs fell too cold. The big ones have an advantage in their size. They can walk up to half an hour.
- Between 0 to 20 degrees Fahrenheit the small and tiny dogs feel so much cold.
- Below 0 degrees the weather is not favorable for anyone. Dogs and everybody else should stay indoors.
- In wind chill, just like it is with humans, no dog should be outside straying. Very low windy temperatures can cause frostbite to dogs in a very short time, probably minutes.
- Rainy weather may not be below freezing point but getting the dog outside may make it get soaked and shiver later due to cold.
Factors To Consider When It Is Too Cold For A Dog
1. Age Of The Dog
Both puppies and old dogs should stay indoors if the weather is below freezing point. Puppies shiver a lot in times of cold due to their lack of coordination. The older dogs slip during winter due to loss of flexibility.
2. Dog Breed
Different dog breeds have different winter weather tolerance. For example, Bullmastiffs cannot sustain both chilly and hot weather conditions. Another one is Labrador Retriever, this breed has a moderate coat and fat layer under the skin to protect it for swimming. A Husky breed has a double-thick coat, so it can tolerate cold seasons. Other breeds need not much attention when it comes to extreme temperatures. They include Saint Bernard, Newfoundland, and Keeshond. Therefore, dog owners should learn their dog breed and characteristic to be able to monitor their favorable weather conditions.
3. Health Conditions
For instance, a dog with arthritis is at risk of worsening the condition when the weather is extremely cold.
4. Size And Weight
A physically healthy dog that is meaty and large get comfortable in cold weather. The one that is skinny and small cannot withstand cold for long.
5. Activity Level
A very active dog when outside in the cold, shows that she can stay up long in the cold. The inactive cannot keep up her body temperatures to stay longer periods.
Cold Weather Safety Tips For Dogs
- After taking a walk with your dog, remember to wipe her pads and paws. She might have picked some poisonous chemicals or got soaked in wetness.
- Never let your dog walk on an ice-covered pond. They may look thick but are dangerous. The dog can risk slipping.
- Have a leash on your dog. Snow and ice hide recognizable scents. This helps the dog to find their way home if they get lost.
- Minimize using antifreeze or rather use it carefully. Ensure there are zero spills all the time. They have a sweet taste and dogs can lap which is extremely poisonous.
- Cars cool down faster in extreme weather. If you are going for errands, live the dog at home. don’t go with her and live her in the car. She can get sick.
- Make sure you have a plan B in case of emergencies. Have enough dog food and warm beddings in case it gets extremely cold to get out.
Regardless of the dog’s age and breed, cold temperatures cause hypothermia and Frostbite. This happens when the dog has been exposed to too much cold. Prolonged exposure makes her not to sustain her body temperatures. You get to know your dog has hypothermia when she gets weak and starts shivering, have inaudible heartbeats and has trouble while breathing. Immediately you notice these signs, move her to a warm area. Cover her with warm clothes as you purpose to seek medical care from a vet.