When you can feel the weather changing to winter , think of your dog as well as yourself!
But not often enough do we think of our dogs.
Whilst it is true that dogs have lived in the wild, the same can be said about man and just because they have fur doesn’t mean that their coat is in any way adequate to deal with everything Mother Nature can dish out. Sure some breeds are able withstand long periods of time outdoors in cold weather, but they would also be acclimatised to that weather through many winters, but breeds like Staffordshire Terriers or any short coated dog really don’t have the ability t5o withstand the cold as well. It doesn’t take much to make sure your best friend will enjoy winter.
Dogs will eat more during the winter months, as keeping warm burns calories, but you have to also exercise your dog to prevent them gaining winter weight. If a dog lives outside in an outdoor kennel, consider covering the top of the kennel with a water-proof tarp or something similar, water in your dogs bedding won’t dry fast in winter, but it will make sleeping in the kennel a very cold and unpleasant experience. You can also add a Heat Pad that can come on via a timer and keep the kennel warm and comfortable.
Bring your dog inside, especially during the afternoon and overnight when the temperature drops dramatically, and prepare a warm bed for them to sleep through the night. Dog boots are great for winter walks, think of your feet without shoes walking down a cold wet road. BRrrrrrr!
Get your dog a coat that will help him maintain his body temp whilst still being able to move freely. Good quality coats last many winters and are a good investment. They are often water / wind proof and can really make going outdoors great fun with your dog, regardless of the weather.
Be aware that puppies and older dogs can’t tolerate weather change as fast as healthy adult dogs, just as with humans, young and old dogs are more susceptible to the effects of the cold. It is a good idea to maintain your dogs grooming, a well groomed coat will be more able to protect from the cold than matted oily hard, and when you bathe your pet, be sure to dry his coat thoroughly before allowing him outside.
Old dogs need special care during winter, they are not as mobile as young dogs and may have arthritis that can strike them down in cold weather, be extra vigilant to make sure that older dogs are kept warm all of the time. The cold can really add a lot of pain to older dogs and make them miserable and of course every winter claims the life of some old dogs. Might be worth a trip to the vet to check if your dog has arthritis
Always remember that by the time you see your dog displaying symptoms of being cold, they have been cold a while.
On our Online Store we have great Winter Coats, Boots and Heating Pads for your dog, might be worth a look and gear your best friend up for Winter.