As the cold weather approaches, one common question that seems to
be on every pet parent’s mind is, “How cold is too cold?” This
question is usually met with a complicated answer but
fortunately, there are precautions that you can take to prevent
any damage to your dog.Physical activity and good mental
stimulation are important for the overall well-being of your dog.
But what about during freezing cold weather? Our pets still need
physical activity to keep them fit and healthy but do the dangers
of going outside outweigh the disadvantages of staying inside?
The first thing that pet owners need to understand is that not
all pets are the same. There are various ways in which they
Variables That Affect How Different Dogs Feel Differently
About The Cold
Some dogs might find the weather warm and cozy while others will
run in search of a hot shelter. There are many different
variables that can affect how different dogs feel about different
Coat color – Darker colored coats can absorb
more sunlight than lighter colors can. So dogs with black,
brown and other dark coats are usually warmer than dogs who
have lighter coats.
Coat type – Dogs like Siberian Huskies,
Samoyeds, or Newfoundlands have double-layered coats that are
thicker in comparison to other dogs. These thick coats make
them the most tolerant to really cold weather conditions. These
breeds are also technically from Northern areas where the
climates can drop to drastic numbers so other than their thick
coats, they also have physiological, behavioral, and anatomical
attributes that make them more tolerant to the cold weather.
Weight – Body fat is a natural insulator. The
heavier dogs can withstand much colder conditions than thinner
Size – Smaller dogs tend to get colder than
larger dogs. Mostly because smaller dogs have a larger surface
area to volume ratio.
Conditioning – Dogs who have already been
accustomed to cold temperatures can handle these conditions
much better than dogs who have just been introduced to these
Health and Age – The very old, the extremely
young, or the sicker dogs are not able to regulate their body
temperature in accordance with the weather conditions. Healthy
dogs that are in the prime of their lives need less protection
from the cold.
Different Types Of Cold Weather Conditions
There are factors that you have to consider in order to decide
whether the weather is too cold for your dog. The temperature on
the thermostat is not the only thing that can determine the
Dampness – Even if the weather isn’t that
cold, going for a swim, rain, heavy fog, snow, or anything else
that can soak through his fur could chill him to the bone.
Wind chill – When there is a brisk breeze out,
it is better to stay inside. A strong enough breeze can cut
through your dog’s coat and decrease his ability to insulate
against the cold weather.
Activity – If you have an active dog who loves
to play, he can generate enough energy needed to keep him cozy
even while he’s out in cold weather conditions.
Cloud Cover – Even dogs with darker coats have
a hard time staying warm during cloudy days. Dogs need to soak
up the warmth of the sun in order to feel warm.
If you find any dog out in the cold that you think may be
suffering from hypothermia, call the vet immediately for help.
Cold temperatures put dogs and other pets at risk of developing
hypothermia and frostbite.
Winter Is Here, Here Are A Few Dangers To Look Out For
Winter is a wonderful tie for most people. But for our pets, it
can be quite dangerous. They don’t always have the same
protection that we do and that can have adverse effects on their
health. Talk to your vet about the best ways to prevent illness
and conditions like hypothermia for your pets this winter. Don’t
hesitate to take them to the vet when you suspect that something
might be wrong.
Winter Hazards You Should Be
that it’s alright for pets to be out in the cold during winter
because of their fur coats. However, this doesn’t always
protect them against the harsh winter conditions. In fact, they
start experiencing hypothermia when their temperature drops
below the normal range which is 100 to 102.5°F. Hypothermia is
a very serious condition that if you leave it untreated, it
could cause heart failure, coma, and even death. In order to
preserve the function of the vital organs, your pet’s body
slows down the blood flow to the extremities and that could
lead to frostbite. Watch for paleness or intense shivering as
first signs of hypothermia.
always a big danger to pets. Antifreeze is even attractive to
pets because of the fact that it’s brightly colored and sweet
to the taste. It also contains a dangerous ingredient called
ethylene glycol. If a pet is left alone after drinking
anti-freeze, the ethylene glycol could possibly even kill
them.Watch for these few
signs:* Uncoordination or disorientation* Vomiting*
DroolingThese signs will soon resolve themselves in exchange
for some serious internal injuries. Next, your pet’s body will
start experiencing seizures, kidney failure, and he could even
fall into a coma!
CarsCars are capable
of doing various kinds of harm to our pets – especially during
the winter. They like snuggling up next to the exhaust and even
under the hood and that can be very dangerous. It’s easy to
miss a cat or a small dog in the intense snow. They might get
caught up in parts of the engine or even get run over! Always
check in and around the car before you start up the engine and
get on your way.
Rock Salt or Sidewalk
De-icersThese are salts spread on the road in order to
melt the ice. These harsh salts can not only harm your pet’s
delicate paws, but they can also be a danger to your pet if he
consumes it. Most common signs of salt poisoning are diarrhea,
vomiting, walking drunk, lethargy etc.
deadly chemicals which can be potentially fatal to our pets.
Although the intensity of the damage depends on the quantity in
which it’s ingested, it’s not a good idea to lay out
rodenticides where your pets can find them.