GO!

Walking in cold weather.. safety

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.

  
(Page 1 of 2: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2  
Juno

Village Mutt
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 19, '08 7:29pm PST 
It's starting to get cold (we live in AK), and I'm wondering about general time guidelines for walking dogs in cold weather.

I have a pom mix, so she's got that warm double coat- I am mostly worried about her ears and paws, though.

How long can we stay out when it's 0 degrees? -10 degrees? -20?

We're in the routine now of taking 1.5 hour walks daily. If it's not safe for her to continue walking in cold weather for that long, as is, can you recommend a good dog coat? booties? hat?? Do they make cold weather gear for dogs?

I've heard they can get frostbite on their ears and pads, but then why is it okay for sled teams (huskies and malamutes) to be out in the cold for hours, sometimes down to -30?
[notify]
Annie, CGC

Cheese!
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 19, '08 7:54pm PST 
I'm sure your pom would be fine with her double coat, but she might need booties to protect her feet. As for her ears, they should be fine, once again because of her fur, but you can always check them by touch. Basically it's just gonna depend on your pom as to how cold she can handle. When it gets really really cold, like below zero, i would keep an eye on her. if she gets cold, she'll shiver just like us.

sled dogs usually wear booties to protect their feet from snow and ice, but usually stay warm because of two things, one they have really REALLY thick winter coats, and two, they are running most of the time smile

Maybe someone will pop in who has better cold weather experience, i live in Montana so when it dips much below zero, i just call off the walks until it warms up!! laugh out loud
[notify]
Boston

King of- everything
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 19, '08 8:19pm PST 
You should be fine. I walk mine. Its getting cold here to been below normal I hate walking in the cold but this year I am going to try my best even if its short walks more often otherwise Daisy will get fat again. I put when there is snow on the ground booties on them and they have warm winter coats. They seem fine. If Boston my smallest guy is out to long when it is like in the teens he will shiver. But in weather like that I wont go for long walks. Just maybe get a warm coat and some booties. When its really cold just go for short walks more often if possible. I figure any little bit is better then nothing. shrug Pet Smart sells booties and coats. I got Daisy's gear at Pet Value. Bostons came from PetEdge.com. They have everything there.
[notify]

Gunner

I solemnly swear- that I am up to- no good
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 19, '08 8:28pm PST 
I also believe that you need to watch out for roads that have been salted. I don't know if it cuts their feets or burns them, but don't walk on salted roads. smile
[notify]
Lily

Whose bed?? Why- would YOU think- that?
 
 
Barked: Wed Nov 19, '08 9:32pm PST 
We don't have any choice on the salted roads. Today was a freezing rain day and it got very icy. All I can do is wipe off the dogs' feet when we get in. Lily won't wear boots. Moira probably would, but it's not going to happen three times a day.

Your dogs should be OK for walks as long as they keep moving.

BTW, Huskies are quite comfy just hanging out outside in nasty weather. That fluffy tail makes a great wrap for their feet and tummy. The ears don't seem to get cold. I never left mine out, but they would have been happy if I had. When Jo got old, she frostbit a foot playing out with the kids too long. Whenever she wanted in, she would come to the door and raise her paw like it hurt. Trouble was she couldn't remember which one it was - quite the actress!
[notify]
Irena Ted

Got Sheep?
 
 
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.
[notify]
Juno

Village Mutt
 
 
Barked: Thu Nov 20, '08 7:59pm PST 
Thanks for all the tips.

I'm rural- and the salt doesn't work at extremely low temps- so they don't use that here. No cars, anyway- just snowmachines and four-wheelers (and a couple trucks).

So I'll invest in a good pair of booties and a warm coat.. the hard part will be getting her to wear them! I'm sure she'll get used to it though.

As a teacher in the district, we actually get free Yak Trax! They're a necessity! I'm set on warm clothing for myself, too. It was -22 wind chill when I went out today, and I still actually got hot.. too MANY layers! ..Good long underwear, fleece midlayer, insulated ski pants and goose down parka, fur bomber hat, scarf, gloves and mittens, and I'm good to go! It takes a lot of time to get ready, but we both need the walks!

And yes.. it is awkward holding the leash with those big mittens!
[notify]
Annie, CGC

Cheese!
 
 
Barked: Thu Nov 20, '08 8:37pm PST 
when you first introduce the booties and coat, make sure that it's a good experience for your pup! give her lots of treats and praise while you're putting them on. Also, start with just short periods of time. put them on and leave them on for a couple of minutes and take them back off (with the treats and praise mentioned above smile ) and gradually move your way up from there.

who knows, maybe she'll love them! but in case she doesn't this is a good way for her to get used to them slowly. good luck!! smile

brrr, i don't envy your climate, it's bad enough here in Montana!!! laugh out loud
[notify]
Juno

Village Mutt
 
 
Barked: Sun Nov 23, '08 9:42am PST 
Thanks! Something else I wouldn't have thought of. I just ordered a set, so I'm excited to see her reaction!

The cold's not bad, if you have the right clothes smile
[notify]
Juno

Village Mutt
 
 
Barked: Sun Nov 23, '08 9:43am PST 
Thanks! Something else I wouldn't have thought of. I just ordered a set, so I'm excited to see her reaction!

The cold's not bad, if you have the right clothes smile
[notify]
  (Page 1 of 2: Viewing entries 1 to 10)  
Page Links: 1  2