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Which dog breeds need sweaters?

November 22nd, 2006, 07:28 AM
I live in Montreal, where it can get quite cold. I keep seeing people walking dogs like chihuahuas, Boston terriers, dalmatians, "mini pintzers" (I can't remember what they're called, sorry!), and other short hair breeds without sweaters. It's bad enough seeing big hairy dogs hopping from foot to foot while their owners are inside the store or coffee shop (hey - put a newspaper down so their paws don't freeze!), but the little ones.... It breaks my heart.

Would I be terribly wrong if I were to go around telling people to bundle their dogs as well as they bundle themselves?

All opinions welcome! But I'd also really like to know which breeds are particularly succeptible to cold.

pug lover
November 22nd, 2006, 07:41 AM
pugs-- mine loves to be warm:crazy:

November 22nd, 2006, 07:57 AM
Would I be terribly wrong if I were to go around telling people to bundle their dogs as well as they bundle themselves?

good luck w/ that. instead of "telling" people, perhaps you would be better received if you first commented on how cute the dog is, then say something like "oh I saw some doggy sweaters/jackets/boots at [insert store name here] that would look just darling on your dog!" sort of "plant" the idea, instead of telling people what they should be doing.

I have a basenji-x. basenji's don't tolerate the cold/wet weather. my dog can't be outside in the winter for any real length of time without a coat.

November 22nd, 2006, 08:01 AM
I have a beagle that gets very cold outside in the winter. I have seen her lifting her paws because her little tootsies are too cold, and there have been times when she has shivered in the winter. So my mother took the liberty of knitting her a beautiful wool sweater, and Cassie (the beagle) absolutely loves it!!!

But I also know beagles that don't mind the cold as much as Cassie do, so in this case it isn't breed-specific:shrug:

November 22nd, 2006, 10:12 AM
I've found that "telling" people things about how to care for their dogs usually just results in defensiveness and you don't get anywhere.

On the other hand, walking my two around in the midst of Montreal winter in their coats and boots gets lots of attention. So many people stop me to ask where I got the boots or coats, how well they work, what they cost, etc. I try to give them as much info as possible, various options in different price ranges and a few places they can get them.....and then because I'm a psycho I mention all the good foods available at the same stores :evil:

November 22nd, 2006, 10:23 AM
Don't worry, Jessi76 - I usually do preface it with a good scruff behind the ears (if the dog lets me of course ;) ) and a "Aren't you a handsome/beautiful dog? yes you are!" Try chit chat with the owner and suggest putting some newspaper under the dog's feet if he's going to be left tied up outside for a while. Or the clueless approach of, "Wow, your pug's tough! I always thought they needed sweaters in winter?" hint hint hint

The only time I got really cruel to an owner was a ditz of a woman walking her chihuahua (Hello! Mexican breed?) most of one winter with no sweater or booties on the poor animal. It's minus 30 degrees Celcius out - she's all bundled up but her dog is FREEZING :frustrated: . After the 4th time seeing this and again trying to gently suggest the dog needs some protection and getting the fish-face from the woman, I stomped off with, "Fine. Don't spend a few dollars on some protection for your dog. Let him die instead." Sadly, I didn't see the chihuahua again after February. Always saw the woman - just no more dog. :(

November 22nd, 2006, 10:51 AM
chi's don't need that much exercise anyways....she probably just left him at home to be warm

i know someone who doesn't really take her dog out for pees if she's lazy and the dog's been trianed to pee on newspaper. Her excuse is that it's easier to clean:yuck: nastyness!

November 22nd, 2006, 02:01 PM
No - sadly - when I say I never saw the chihuahua again, I mean, I never saw that dog again, not even in the summer. :sad: He was a cute little fella, too. His owner still lives in the neighbourhood. Chances are she now has a cat and hasn't bothered to neuter it 'cos it "costs too much".

But I still would like to know what breeds one should be careful about. I mean, shorthairs - it's pretty obvious, though some breeds seem hardier than others. So if I could have some help on a list of cold-susceptible dog breeds, it would be very much appreciated.

November 22nd, 2006, 02:40 PM
I'd say any small dog (regardless of fur), and any larger breed with short hair. Small dogs just have less body volume to keep them warm, so anything to keep the core temp up is good, IMO... And that includes boots! :)

(Boots for everybody! :highfive: )

November 22nd, 2006, 04:18 PM
I'd have to go with what Prin said, though with long hair small dogs you do have to be carefull not to bundle them up too much cuz they can overheat (examples would be dogs like cavelier king charles spaniels). But in particular I do know that you have to be very careful with Italian greyhounds, whippets, and greyhounds. They have like no body fat and therefore are very suseptible to cold. Even with a thick sweater Candi still shivers like mad, and I live in Houston TX where it only gets to like 50 F.

November 23rd, 2006, 02:15 PM
That brings up an interesting question. Are there signs (other than the obvious shivering), that a dog is too cold?

November 23rd, 2006, 03:21 PM
Ear and foot temp, for starters.:shrug: When the body gets cold, it takes the blood away from the extremities to keep the core warmer. Like if the blood goes through the ears, it comes back colder, which isn't good, so the body sends less there.

Otherwise, there are also signs in posture. Dogs spread out when they're hot and ball up when they're cold, but if they're sitting, they sort of hunch more than usual if they're cold too.:shrug:

November 23rd, 2006, 04:59 PM
miniature pinscher *wink* for sure need sweaters, Boswer will not even walk out the door in the cold without his jacket on. We're working on the shoes for when winter comes (his first winter in montreal so ie. his first winter with snow). I hope the shoes help with his feet cause when he gets his toes cold he alternates feet and only walks on 3

November 23rd, 2006, 08:58 PM
Iím often amazed by just how much cold some dogs can bare. When I was in high school, I used to walk our Bouvier every evening. Other than booties, he wore nothing in the winter. I can remember taking him out in -40C, and him loving it. Meanwhile I was bundled up in everything I could get my hands on (including my bath robe). I have a pic of that somewhere.

November 24th, 2006, 08:41 AM
Greyhounds, whippets and italian greyhound they have a low body fat ratio. Body fat helps to insulated the body which make these 3 susceptable to hot and cold extremes for example I have to have air/conditioning or a pool for the dogs during heat waves.

The hairless chinese crested for obvious reasons , most toy breeds regardless of hair length will neet clothes, puppies should be clothed since body does not regulate temp as well. smaller short haired breed

some of the bigger short hairs can handle moderate cold because of their body fat and their coat contains oils which helps against wind and moisture example labs

It also make a difference if the dog is out running, or brisk walking but if just standing will get cold

November 24th, 2006, 12:54 PM
Not all small dogs need coats -

Gomez for example, has a double, weatherproof coat that is meant for harsh elements, if I put a coat on him he might overheat if he is running around -

Plus, he absolutely hates it if I put even a little t-shirt on him, even as a joke!

November 24th, 2006, 01:01 PM
Jemma has a much thicker coat than Boo, and loves the cold, but she hits a point when she just becomes cold all of a sudden. Like she's fine, fine, fine, then oo! shaking really hard. So now I'm more careful with her and don't believe her when she says she's ok.:D

Boo on the other hand can lie out in the snow and never get cold. Weird.

November 26th, 2006, 11:58 AM
whippets need coats

November 26th, 2006, 12:04 PM
Two out of three of my little girls are wearing coats right now...inside of the house!

They're all long-haired breeds...mixes of some sort of possibly Shih tzu, Maltese, and Yorkshire Terrier, but I usually don't keep their hair very long. Since I trimmed their hair up a bit last week, they're pretty cold so they just have coats on all of the time :p.

The Shih tzu X HATES any kind of clothing (she freezes up and refuses to move...great for pictures, but not much else), so I'm slowly trying to get her used to it while keeping her walks very, very short. Then again, all three of their walks are pretty short right was just too cold yesterday and I ended up carrying them most of the time :rolleyes: . I think I would have gotten funny looks, except that everyone else was inside their warm house by the fire!

November 26th, 2006, 01:11 PM
they have very short coats (no undercoat) and, if they're well-taken-care-of, have little to no body fat. Their ears are also pretty thin (so a coat with a hoody is always a goood idea)

November 26th, 2006, 05:03 PM
Very cute Downloader!! I always love your doggies.:cloud9:

November 26th, 2006, 07:14 PM
Thanks Prin, Truman is getting sad he thinks summer is never coming back:( :(

last year


November 26th, 2006, 08:31 PM
I met a wonderful woman last year who, in a side-line, made custom-made dog coats. I bought about 6 from her. My Huntaway was short-haired and My Kerry Blue (who was always impecably groomed and therefor short-haired) could get cold in this weather. It can get to about -20 or -25 C around here. They both got two - made of fleece on the top, they were wool-lined and fit them perfectly. My lab/hound cross got two that really suited her personality (happy faces in yellow and black and a checked print in black/red/grey). Gretchen, my English Sheepdog got one that was leopard printed. I had one to spare just in case one of the others was in need of cleaning. Only my Belgian Shepherd didn't need to wear one. We get alot of snow here so all of the dogs get 'booties' or if we're really in a hurry there is a product you can buy at Total Pet that you can rub on their pads so the snow doesn't pack between their toes.

November 26th, 2006, 09:01 PM
Yey! Truman! He is so adorable. Poor guy though... I wonder what he'd think if he knew summer wasn't going to be back for another 6 months. :( :D

Where's Ashley? ;)

November 27th, 2006, 07:42 PM
Cooper is a shih tzu. He has long hair and he LOVES the cold. Last winter one of his favorite things was to run headfirst and jump into snowpiles.

But because he IS a small dog and his legs are short I was advised that he still needs to be covered. I have to buy new boots. Last year we had the hardest time with them--but he was more a puppy then so it was a huge ordeal getting them off and on. He thought they were toys. They're too small and I'm going to invest in a better set.

His winter coat from last year is too small too. It makes me sad because last year it was too big.:(

We just bought him the cutest hoodie ever !! And he loves wearing it because he gets extra attention in that.

But I was told by someone smart here on the boards that dogs that low to the ground need the added warmth to protect their organs, even if they have long hair.

November 27th, 2006, 07:43 PM
Ashley hates winter too, she sleeps all day

5 months


December 4th, 2006, 04:51 PM
well my purty Lady is a large girl but I bundle her up in her jacket every winter because shes got short hair and shes getting older.. She doesnt mind the snow but she prefers to be indoors .

December 5th, 2006, 12:48 AM
Yey Ashley! She's so beautiful.:cloud9: