|Barked: Thu Nov 20, '08 2:58am PST |
|Good for you for toughing it out! I have BC friends who live in AK and Canada - many populated places in Canada get down to lower temps and stay much colder than AK!
You will need to use booties almost for sure. Particularly when the temps get really low. Dogs radiate a good bit of heat out their feet, so that will increase the time she can stay out with you. Booties also, as someone mentioned, protect her feet from any salted areas you might encounter. If you have a good snow cover, this might not be a big problem. My in laws lived in Wassilla (sp?) for a year and I remember their saying that pretty much people walk on snow and drive on it there rather than trying to get rid of it.
For the rest, go by the same rule that you would. I'd go ahead and coat a dog that small. I have a toy breed also (not dogstered yet). If I would wear a coat, she does too. If I need protection from the wind such as a high collar or scarf, she gets one too (she has a in insulated blanket coat with a hat). If I wear ear muffs or a hat, she gets her parka with a hoodie.
Dogs get frostbite at pretty much the same rate that people do. A dog can stay outside in crazy freezing temps without serious harm, by denning up - nose to tail. But moving out and about, you want to make sure you are aware of the time limits the temperature and wind chill give to everyone.
For you, hand protection which includes glove liners inside mittens is a must. It's awkward to hold a leash in mittened hands and it's very dangerous to havea dog pulling on you over slipperly surfaces, so be sure she walks nicely on a leash!
Get yourself a pair of Yak Trax to increase your confidence walking over slick spots. My inlaws discovered these when they lived up north and they've revolutionized my working ability on icy days here. Don't snicker - winter is sprinkled pretty liberally with ice storms where I live and it's incredibly dangerous to work and travel in one. But, of course, we don't generally have to worry about being harmed by the mere air, from it being so cold! We almost never see those kinds of temps here.
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