Does My Dog Need A Winter Coat?
When the temperatures drop, you bundle up in your winter clothes. While you’ve never put a coat on your dog before, have you ever wondered if your dog actually needs one?
Cold weather dog garments are not only about making your dog look fashionable and cute. Dog sweaters and coats provide extra insulation for your pup, keeping your dog safe during the cold season.
However, not all dogs need coats; in some instances, the extra layer of warmth can be more harmful than helpful. The dog's size, breed, and temperament are some factors in determining which dogs need coats and which don't.
How Cold Is Too Cold?
Most dogs can endure temperatures of about 7.2 degrees Celsius, for about 15 to 20 minutes. This varies on the individual dog; a good rule of thumb is that if it is too cold for you, it is presumably too cold for them.
If you notice your dog shivering, whining, slowing down, and appearing uncomfortable, it's time to head inside.
Which Breeds Need To Wear Dog Coats And Jackets?
Some breeds are well-fitted for colder weather. They probably don't have to wear winter coats, or only in extremely cold climates. Also, large dogs with dense and thick coats, like Siberian Huskies, Chow Chow, and other northern breeds, don't require cover from the cold. Their coat consists of fine and wavy hairs that create a dense layer of insulation that traps heat.
However, other dogs might need extra warmth, like:
Small Breeds, Toy And Miniature dogs, And Puppies
These small pups can't quickly produce and maintain enough body heat to keep themselves warm. They have a relatively larger surface area through which to lose heat than big dogs. And if they have thick fur coat or undercoat, most small dogs will still get cold fast because of their small stature. Example: Frenchie and Chihuahua
Dog breeds with short hair will get cold faster as they have less protection, specifically if they have low body fat. Even if you have a large breed dog, it's better to have a winter jacket ready. Example: Terrier, Greyhounds, Boxers, Chinese Crested
Dogs With Short Legs
Their tummies and bodies tend to come into contact with snow and ice. If your dog's belly touches the snow-covered ground during walks, you should probably buy some winter apparel that coves their tummy and legs. Example: Basset Hounds, Dachshunds, and Corgis
Dogs With Medical Conditions
Dogs with joint or muscle stiffness or arthritis need to wear coats to help protect their affected body parts from the cold weather. If they're suffering from skin and fur diseases that affect hair growth, it'll provide added insulation on the frigid winter days that they are otherwise lacking.
Furthermore, kidney disease, diabetes, and heart disease can hinder a dog's ability to keep its body temperature higher.
Consult with your vet and ask for some expert advice if your pet will need a coat during the colder seasons.
Older dogs' bodies are less efficient at heat regulation than healthy, younger dogs. They have weaker immune systems and typically succumb to arthritis or other age-related conditions, and winter can worsen these ailments.
What Can Happen If Your Dog Gets Too Cold?
A dog who gets too cold could suffer from hypothermia. Frostbite can also become a problem in extreme temperatures. And if the dog's body temperature decreases further, it can lead to cardiac failure, brain damage, and death in severe cases.
Choosing The Right Dog Coat
Now you know that your dog could benefit from wearing coats during the cooler months, it's time to decide on the right jacket. Depending on the weather and the thickness of your dog's coat, a sweater might be enough to keep your dog warm. But a winter jacket might be essential if the weather forecast includes freezing rain or snow.
Shop for winter garments that cover your dog's neck, tummy, and back. It must fit comfortably from the base of the neck to the base of the tail without being too tight or loose. Use a tape measure to get your dog's measurements, which will help decide whether a specific piece of pet apparel will fit.
Waterproof fabrics are paramount, considering a wet dog will get colder faster than a dry pup. Even thick fur cannot protect your dog perfectly. Winter clothing mustn't have parts that can be chewed off and swallowed; avoid clothes with a zipper, buttons, or tags. Choose garments with Velcro since they are easier to wear/remove.
Some people also opt for dog booties to protect little paws during winter walks.
Does Your Dog Need A Coat?
The answer will significantly depend on the breed of dog you own. However, having a winter coat at hand is a great idea to ensure your dog feels cozy. Note that a dog wearing a coat indoors can overheat fast, so remember to take them off when inside your home.
Now, all that's left is to buy dog jackets and coats for your furry friend. If you need help, check out our collection. Haute Dawgs' collection has different styles and features for your dog's winter garment needs.
For more information, don't hesitate to message us.