Your dog may have fur, but that doesn’t mean they don't get cold. When walking your dog in winter months, it’s important to provide your pet with extra protection on walks. Keep in mind though, the type of warmth you need to provide depends on size and the thickness of their fur. For example, a Chihuahua is more susceptible to the cold than a Siberian Husky or Saint Bernard whose origins date back to the Alps of Switzerland. A shivering pup isn’t a good sign. Here’s how you can tell if your dog is cold and how to keep them warm on winter walks.
Monitor Your Pet’s Behavior
Not Interested in Going Out
You may start to notice that your pet who loves to walk signals they don’t want to go out when the weather changes. Sitting and digging paws into the ground or floor once you bring out the leash is an obvious clue.
Whining is another sign they are not enjoying the cold. Whether it’s whining when you try to take them out or whining while they’re outside, make sure to protect them when they’re uncomfortable.
They may even cower or run away to hide from you. Your pet is obviously trying to avoid the outside for some reason. During winter, colder temperatures make the ground, grass, and sidewalks freezing on their poor paws.
Proper-fitting Clothes for Your Dog
Adding layers is a great way to keep your dog warm. Clothes should fit properly to ensure safety and maximum benefit. To figure out your pet’s size, measure, in inches, from the base of their neck to the base of their tail. In general, an extra small dog is 8 inches, small is 10-12 inches, medium is 14-16 inches, large is 18-20 inches, and extra-large is 22-24 inches. If your dog is an xx-small or xx-large , consider taking them to the pet supply store to try on different varieties, or ask the salesperson for help. Always prepare your dog for clothes with training and lots of treats. The clothes available for dogs are:
Once you know your dog’s size, get your pet a coat to ward off the chill. Coats provide extra warmth on chilly walks. Be sure to purchase coats from reputable retailers so that they are functional as well as stylish.
This Pet Life Ski Parka is a terrific option for arctic temperatures (anything below 30 degrees Fahrenheit). It has 3M Thinsulate thermal fabric that retains body heat and is breathable so your pet doesn’t get overheated, and the Velcro around the belly is easy to put on and take off.
Sweater or Hoodie
When it’s cold but not exactly freezing, you may want to buy your dog a sweater. This sweater by Bond & Co offers styles from extra small to extra-large. Or consider a hoodie for a style that’s modern and cool on your pet. This Star Wars-themed Chewbacca hoodie could make your dog the king of the neighborhood.
If your pet doesn’t enjoy wearing clothing, invest in booties to protect their paws in extreme weather. These Guardian Gear Fleece Lined Boots are durable and warm to protect their paws in all kinds of weather. On snowy days this “paw-wear” is just what your pooch pal needs to dart around. These particular booties come in xxx-small to xx-large for basically any size animal.
No matter your dog, keeping them comfortable and protected from the winter elements is a top priority.