There are breeds that are more tolerant of cold weather than others. All northern dogs are among them, but ultimately no animal should be left outside for extended periods when temperatures drop significantly. Not every dog lives in the house with people, but everyone should be given maximum comfort. How to take care of a dog that lives outside in winter?
If you’re looking for more advice and information, check out the dog questions articles here as well.
Before the cold weather – what to think about before winter?
You should take care of your dog before winter starts. Before the cold weather, you must:
Perform a preventive examination – each dog should undergo them at least once a year. Dogs that are mostly outdoors are exposed to extreme weather conditions, which can worsen their health. Cold definitely has a negative effect on dogs with joint disease. Similarly, animals with diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, or hormonal imbalance have difficulty regulating their body temperature. With such pets, you should definitely think about a better shelter than a kennel. Research, research and research again!
Provide your dog with a safe haven – it is not recommended to keep dogs outside during winter frosts, but if your quadruped is to spend a lot of time like this, provide him with a warm, solid shelter from cold and wind. Don’t forget about thick and dry bedding. However, avoid e.g. heaters or heating lamps due to the risk of burns or fire. The room or kennel must be large enough for the animal to sit comfortably and lie down or turn around. At the same time, it should be small enough to be warm and cozy. If you can, arrange them in a garage, porch or other shelter.
Be prepared for difficult conditions – we haven’t had a harsh winter for a long time, but you always have to be prepared, for example, for blizzards and even power cuts. It is good to have some medications for dogs at home and a supply of canned or dry food.
Dog outside – what to do in winter?
When the cold weather sets in, there are a few things to consider. First, check your dog regularly and check his health. Check the paws for signs of injury or damage such as broken paw pads or bleeding. Check your dog’s behavior and look for signs of possible discomfort.
Second, take care of your dog’s proper diet. Your dog’s winter meals can be gently warm (as long as you serve him a home or wet food). In winter, animals outdoors will need more calories to generate enough heat and energy. It’s worth talking to your vet about this. Additionally, make sure that your person has unlimited access to fresh and non-frozen water. To do this, you need to change it more often or use a heated dog bowl.
Third, respond to any signs of said discomfort. If your pet:
he is anxious
when he stops greeting you, it’s time to take him inside.
If you suspect your pet is hypothermic or frostbite, consult your vet immediately. Also check this article for tips on how to make a dog kennel.
Cosmetics for dogs – is there a way to frostbite?
On the pet market, there are mainly cosmetics intended for the pads of the dog’s paws, which protect them against cold and irritation by salt or other agents that may be on sidewalks or roads in winter.
A well-groomed coat is also important. Healthy has better insulating properties. So remember to brush your pet’s hair regularly. You can add a salmon oil supplement to your dog’s diet. It contains a lot of omega-3 fatty acids, which has a positive effect on the condition of the skin and coat. Other ingredients that have a beneficial effect on your dog’s skin and hair include:
In winter, however, you should definitely avoid bathing your dog, especially when he spends most of his time outside.
You can support your dog’s immunity through the supplements with vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids described above, as well as by administering beta-glucan supplements. It is best to consult your veterinarian about this.
Take care of your dog! If he lives in your yard or watches over your warehouse, he must be provided with the right amount of comfort, warmth and your care in winter.