When the snow pours down it coats streets and parks in sheets of glistening white, while a chilly wind prompts us all too cozy up by the fireplace. If you have a puppy at home, their longing eyes to go and play in the snow will eventually melt your heart and you’ll succumb to their desires.
However, before you go for a stroll on snow-covered streets, have you wondered if your puppy needs to don a winter coat to keep them warm? Would an extra coat over their natural layer of fur be harmful? Here are the answers to all your questions!
Do Puppies Feel Cold?
Puppies whose ancestors were bred to survive in colder climates, don’t feel as cold as the ones who were raised to stay in tropical, warmer climates. So, depending on the breed of dog and the amount of fur they have, different puppies will the cold differently.
When ambient temperatures start dropping, your dog may begin to seek warmth. They’ll do this by cuddling up next to you, sleeping near the fireplace, or curling up underneath a blanket. Some dogs don’t particularly dislike the lower temperatures associated with cold weather, but they find the wetness unfavorable.
So, if your dog simply refuses to go out for walks it probably means that they’re feeling cold and would prefer to stay indoors, where it’s warm.
Do Dogs Require Winter Coats?
Before deciding whether to get an adorable winter coat on your furball, you need to consider several factors. Apart from your dog’s fur cover and breed, you would have to determine the wind speed, and whether your puppy could get wet.
Your furry friend’s age and ability to adjust to cold weather will also come into play while making this decision. Very small puppies, elderly dogs, or dogs prone to illness may find it challenging to stay warm, even if it’s not extremely cold.
A healthy dog with a good fur cover will be the happiest while burrowing around in the snow! If it’s not too sunny and there’s a cold wind blowing, you can play it safe and make your puppy wear a comfortable winter coat.
If your dog is panting too heavily and shows signs of getting overheated, you can promptly take off the coat. There’s no thumb rule for when a dog needs to wear warm clothes; it’s all about observation. When you’re walking outside and see your dog shivering, acting uncomfortable or distressed, or is not able to match their usual pace of walking, you can put on the coat or head inside for warmth.
Temperature At Which Puppies Need Coats
Just like humans, the temperature at which your furry friend would require a coat is subjective. There’s no set rule about what the temperature must be for your pupper to don a winter coat. Just trust your instincts – if you feel you need an additional layer of warmth to head out, then your puppy may need one too!
Usually, you’ll only need warmer clothes like coats in winter, but don’t take this as a thumb rule. Some spring days can get frosty, whereas on some winter days the cold might be bearable. Stay alert for any cues your dog may give you and trust what you feel.
You can also consult a vet if you’re still on the fence. Once you’ve made a decision, you can get adorable designer puppy clothes online from sites like pawspurrs.com and see your dog trot like a fashionista!
Puppy Breeds That Need Coats
Certain dog breeds may require an extra winter coat so that they can brave the cold weather. Puppies who have short fur are susceptible to feeling cold, like Yorkshire Terriers. Large canines who have thick, long fur only require coats in rare situations, perhaps if they’re sick. Huskies, Havenese, Bearded Collies, Chow Chows, and other big, furry dogs need a coat once in a blue moon.
Dark-colored fur also absorbs heat better as compared to lighter fur. Similarly, thinner dogs who don’t have a layer of ‘natural insulation’, that is, muscle or fat, are also likely to feel cold faster. Dog breeds in this category include Greyhounds and Whippets.
Smaller breeds of dogs like Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, and Miniature Pinschers have comparatively more surface area from where their body heat dissipates. So, they’ll also likely need an extra layer of warmth, if you’re taking them out.
Also keep in mind that no matter the breed, exercise or any kind of activity will warm up your dog. So, if your dog is running around, digging, or playing catch with you, they may begin feeling warmer and you might need to take off their coat for a while.
Selecting The Right Winter Coat
Once you have decided that you would need to get a winter coat for your furry friend, you’ll need to select the ideal one. First, start with the material after consulting your vet for their suggestions on the same.
This is important because your dog may be allergic to some materials. So, whenever you buy a coat with a new material that your dog is not used to, watch out for symptoms of allergic reactions. These may include sneezing, itching, vomiting, and swelling, among others.
Keep in mind that the coat you select should be functional and breathable. Your dog should be able to move and play around as usual while wearing it, so you can use some measuring tape to get your puppy’s measurements. The coat shouldn’t be too tight or rub against your dog’s skin as this can cause sores. Loose clothes, on the other hand, may fall off and get in the way while your dog is trotting about.
Some puppies may need to be hugged by an extra layer of warmth, in the form of a winter coat to brave the cold temperatures. By factoring in variables like breed, age, fur type, and wind speeds, you can make a decision on whether your furry friend needs a coat, or not.