Pets.ca - Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 

-->

How cold is too cold for a walk?

Smiley14
February 2nd, 2007, 09:21 PM
Hey guys! Stupid question for you. It's been freezing cold all week and now this weekend we're in a Winter Storm Alert due to Wind Chills being up to -30F and temps between -1 to -14F below zero. It's way too cold to go outside for a walk, at least I've never attempted it in this weather. However, since it's been ongoing all week and will only get worse over the next three days, Petey hasn't been walked properly in too long a time and is getting extremely restless/demanding. Major cabin fever I suppose! :) I've been playing with him and trying all the usual distractions, but it's just not the same as a long walk or a good romp at the dog park.

So my question, is how cold is too cold for a walk? Keep in mind Petey is a shorthair, ie, hardly any fur! Although shorthairs have been used as sleddogs, so they must have some tolerance, lol. Except for course Petey is a spoiled rotten house dog. :rolleyes:
But anyway, I have a down parka for him that he wears in cold weather, but I can't get him to keep on his muttluks, so his legs and paws are exposed to the elements. He of course goes outside to do his business, but comes right back in again. What do you guys do in prolonged periods of extreme cold? Do you venture out just for short walks or ignore stir-crazy and hyper dog as much as you can while playing as much as you can? I'm about to pull my hair out at his craziness right now, LOL!

Prin
February 2nd, 2007, 09:25 PM
Yeah, we try to get them in a full out sprint for 5 minutes and then shove them back in the house to thaw for a while, and then do it all again once their feet are dry again... But muttluks (if you can get them to stay on) do help a ton and make the doggies last a lot longer outside.:o

breeze
February 2nd, 2007, 09:25 PM
what i do is dress very very warm go out for a short brisk walk (almost jogging) and then back home. it seems to do the trick for a while

dogcatharmony
February 2nd, 2007, 09:28 PM
I wish i could help you out with some information but my dog is a Northern breed dog with a big thick coat. it could be a raging blizzard outside and she drags me through it. Minus 30 degree walks, been there done that. Im the one who ends up with frostbite. I dont think i would take a short haired dog for a walk very long out in the cold even with a parka on. Hopefully someone here can give you better information.

Smiley14
February 2nd, 2007, 10:13 PM
Hmm, maybe I'll give the quick dash/jog thing a try! If I don't get frostbite myself that is! LOL! Ugh, too cold! I always worry about his paws the most, but hopefully a quick dash would be okay and would help alleviate some of his desperate energy! Usually it doesn't stay cold for this long a time, so I usually can get away with skipping walks on the really cold days. Not quite so much this time around though! Anyway, thanks guys!

Byrd
February 2nd, 2007, 10:24 PM
I really, really, really hate the cold, snow, ice, so I will admit we don't get out much in the winter. I don't like walking alone in the dark either. We play a lot, lots of chasing balls, tugging, chasing around the house, plus we do a lot of homework for obedience and tricks. When I get home from work it's usually dusk so we will play out in the yard til it gets dark, running and jumping and such.

Oh, I can't wait for summer!

technodoll
February 2nd, 2007, 10:46 PM
i agree with the short jog/ sprint, however long you (and petey!) can endure it. the more you move, the warmer you get though - so you may end up being longer outside than you think. just put some protective cream on petey's feetsies (like Musher's Secret http://www.jbpet.com/Shopping/productb.asp?catalog_name=jbwholesale&product_id=767-0101), secure him in his down jacket, cover all your skin parts even your face and just GO! it can be pretty exhilarating... :crazy:

Purpledomino
February 2nd, 2007, 11:00 PM
I'd have to say it depends on the dog. My Bullmastiff doesn't seem to be phased by even the coldest days, he bulldozes his way through the snow and loves it outside no matter what the temperature. My Minpin however, could freeze to death in five minutes out there, so on really cold days, she's carried out in my coat in her sweater, plopped down, quick pee on two legs, back in coat and rushed inside. Usually if there is more business, we make two trips after a warm up inside. My Dane is somewhere in between, she loves walks with the Bullmastiff when its cold, but will let me know when she's had enough.
I think that as long as the weather isn't all that extreme, and the dog keeps moving, you are okay for at least short walks. Keep in mind the windchill though, that makes a huge difference for me at least, and probably the dogs too. Personally, I enjoy my walks when its cold, but I keep the dogs inside when it is a real deep freeze, then it just gets too dangerous. Todays walk was awesome, the dogs ran and played for an hour at -15 and couldn't be happier! Well, except the Minpin, she stayed in....we didn't want a Minpin popsicle!

Smiley14
February 2nd, 2007, 11:12 PM
i agree with the short jog/ sprint, however long you (and petey!) can endure it. the more you move, the warmer you get though - so you may end up being longer outside than you think. just put some protective cream on petey's feetsies (like Musher's Secret http://www.jbpet.com/Shopping/productb.asp?catalog_name=jbwholesale&product_id=767-0101), secure him in his down jacket, cover all your skin parts even your face and just GO! it can be pretty exhilarating... :crazy:


Oh, I was wondering if there was any sort of cream or protectant made for the pads. I am afraid of them cracking in this cold. (If that is even possible?) Do you think vaseline or something like that would work for now until I can get to the store to buy some of this stuff? It's not like we'll be out there for a long time I suppose, mostly because I'M a big baby in extreme cold, LOL, but I still worry about his feet anyway. :o

We went out on Monday just around the block wearing my oh so attractive ski mask, snowpants, boots, hooded parka, and mittens and scarf and my eyelashes had icicles on them after only a few minutes. But Petey seemed just fine! But now it's going to be about 15 degrees colder than that even. But I think you're right, if we bundle up warm and go for even a quick jog, it will make him sooooo happy. He just looks miserable right now. I feel like a bad mommy. :o

Smiley14
February 2nd, 2007, 11:17 PM
I'd have to say it depends on the dog. My Bullmastiff doesn't seem to be phased by even the coldest days, he bulldozes his way through the snow and loves it outside no matter what the temperature. My Minpin however, could freeze to death in five minutes out there, so on really cold days, she's carried out in my coat in her sweater, plopped down, quick pee on two legs, back in coat and rushed inside. Usually if there is more business, we make two trips after a warm up inside. My Dane is somewhere in between, she loves walks with the Bullmastiff when its cold, but will let me know when she's had enough.
I think that as long as the weather isn't all that extreme, and the dog keeps moving, you are okay for at least short walks. Keep in mind the windchill though, that makes a huge difference for me at least, and probably the dogs too. Personally, I enjoy my walks when its cold, but I keep the dogs inside when it is a real deep freeze, then it just gets too dangerous. Todays walk was awesome, the dogs ran and played for an hour at -15 and couldn't be happier! Well, except the Minpin, she stayed in....we didn't want a Minpin popsicle!


Very true! My sister's minpin Betsy is the same way. Petey's hair is about the same length, but he has plenty of body fat to help pad him. :o But he was kind of the same way, before I had my doggie door, he would beg to go outside, but then as soon as I opened it, he would back right into the house again. I used to have to shove him out the door to do his business and he would stand on three legs at a time, rotating each foot. It was hilarious! But for whatever reason now, with the doggie door, I haven't seen him hesitate like that as he used to. Now he loves to run in and out constantly. No idea why THAT would make a difference to him, other than he's going outside on his own terms. Weird. :rolleyes:

Smiley14
February 2nd, 2007, 11:25 PM
I really, really, really hate the cold, snow, ice, so I will admit we don't get out much in the winter. I don't like walking alone in the dark either. We play a lot, lots of chasing balls, tugging, chasing around the house, plus we do a lot of homework for obedience and tricks. When I get home from work it's usually dusk so we will play out in the yard til it gets dark, running and jumping and such.

Oh, I can't wait for summer!


Hehe, I hear you! I've been so lazy this week. I sit in my corner chair by the fireplace which has a clear view across the room to the stairs going down to the next level and throw his ball. It's a perfect angle. He goes running across the room, all the way down the stairs, and across the family room downstairs, then back up the stairs and back across the room to me. I don't have to move from the warm fire while he does the stairs over and over again. :laughing:

But I think now he's just tired of being inside. He is just annoying hyper right now no matter how many stairs he runs or how many tug-of-wars we play with his rope. He actually started to destroy yellow chicken yesterday! It's his favorite stuffie that he's carried around and slept with for 10 months now and the only one not to get mangled in under 10 minutes. But yesterday, I found a small pile of stuffing and a squeaker on the floor and sure enough a torn hole in chicken's tummy. :rip: Chicken. LOL! I loved that toy.

He won't leave poor Billy alone either, keeps trying to engage him in a game of chase. I've heard a lot of whining and kitty howls the last few days. :rolleyes:

Byrd
February 2nd, 2007, 11:31 PM
Yeah, I feel so guilty, but I am living in the wrong country. I have never been one for winter. It's the wind mostly, and the ice, I'm afraid of falling (you know you're getting older when :rolleyes: ).

At least daylight savings is just a little over a month away (yeah, it's March 11 this year! :D ) So at least I won't have to worry about the dark (as you can all guess, I don't live in the best area).

mummummum
February 3rd, 2007, 03:19 PM
I actually don't thaw out until about June. :eek: My gang love the snow and the colder the better. It's actually kind of sweet watching them fling themselves about making happy-dance angels in the snow. As I am in the city we tend to stay away from slushy, salt-encrusted sidewalks and do all of our mad dashing about in the parks and ravines. There is a rink nearby so we often head over to the "snow mountain" made by the Zamboni. If the snow isn't too fluffy and deep we bring a couple of soft frisbees along and I still try to get Ceili and Bridie swimming (in a heated therapy pool) when I can cadge a lift. Of course because I have to walk them separately, I tend to speed walk on the second trip! :rolleyes:

Prin
February 4th, 2007, 01:36 AM
Aww, really? I'm so not looking forward to daylight savings. I hate it. Waking up an hour earlier? Whose idea was that!? :yell: :sad: I'd take freezing winter over daylight savings any day. :fingerscr

PetFriendly
February 4th, 2007, 11:20 AM
Want to hear something strange?!

I went on vacation last week (and it was crazy cold in Ottawa) and left little Charley with my Dad. Every day Dad took his golden and Charley cross country skkiing for at least 2 km in the big field behind thier house. He would watch Charley for signs of cold, but he never protested and even onthe day when it was -18 he wanted to keep running the field instead of going home.
But, and here's the kicker, I take him out with me last night, and by the time he'd done his business, he was shivering and wanting to come in (and he was wearing a coat!).

So I guess, if the dog is just walking, they'll get cold, but if the dog is in a good run, it can go for much longer, I guess because the blood is flowing better ?!

BLB
February 4th, 2007, 12:57 PM
My shepherd is a big baby in the heat but give her cold and she will be out forever. I've decided fashion is a waste of time so there I am covered from head to toe doing the brisk walk. If she doesn't get out for at least 15 we are toy hunting as there is snow inside from all the stuffing. I have been out in minus 40 but its a fast walk and then back in just remember to check the pads and clean them everyone says oh salt doesn't work at that temperature tell that to the dog with sore feet. Ottawa is in for another cold snap starting tonight so we will try for along run while the sun is out

PetFriendly
February 4th, 2007, 01:04 PM
In colder temps, I've had decent success with Lanolin oil on Charley's feet. I picked it up at Pet Valu, and the only down side to it is that it makes his fur oily for a few hours after we come in (so I try to spray it only on his pads)

Smiley14
February 5th, 2007, 06:24 PM
Well, we survived our bitterly cold walks. LOL! It's still freezing yet today, so I didn't make it out today before work, but did on Sat and Sun for quick 15 minute half-jogs around the block at least. :)

It got to -26C in temps and -34C in windchill. :eek: But I guess it could be worse! My family lives way up north and are enduring temps of -41C today! That is temperature, not windchill mind you. CRAZY! Looks like we're all pretty much freezing together right now, LOL! We need a group hug just to keep warm. :grouphug:

Yellow chicken got a little more destroyed today and it looks like it's now snowing inside the house, but at least he isn't quite so crazy now. The walks seemed to have helped! :thumbs up