When is it too cold to walk your dog? Experts reveal the exact temperature you should keep your pet pooch inside
DOG owners are being urged to take care when walking their pooches in frosty conditions this winter.
With plummeting temperatures and freezing conditions across the UK, experts warn that icy conditions can be dangerous for your pup.
Even though dogs have a natural fur coat to protect them from snow and cold temperatures it doesn't mean immune to significant drops in temperature.
And according to FetchPet, it's the size of your pup and the thickness of their coat that will help determine when it’s safe for them to go outside in winter.
Small or medium-sized dogs with thin coats could be at risk of serious cold-weather conditions if they go outside when the temperature is 7C or lower.
Some bigger dogs with thicker coats, such as Siberian huskies, are more suited to colder climates, and should be fine for long, winter walks.
Fetch Pet veterinarian Dr Aliya McCullough warns that all dogs, regardless of size, face higher chances of frostbite and hypothermia if they’re out at temperatures below -6C.
Veterinary nurse Sarah James told Tyla: “Temperatures tend to be much warmer during the day, so its best to avoid early morning or late evening walks.
“It’s best to go on shorter walks but more frequently – the longer your dog is outside, the lower their body temperature will drop.
“It’s also important to keep your dog on a lead.
As the seasons change and the ground gets covered in frost/snow, dogs might not see deep patches or unsafe areas.”
Sarah added that it’s equally important to keep an eye on our pet pooch’s paws, as winter time is particularly tough when out for walks.
She said: “With the dampness from rain and snow, toxic chemicals, and salt left on the road, it is important to take good care of your dog’s paws by using a damp washcloth or paper towel to avoid any skin irritation."
Other things to keep an eye out for include anti-freeze, which is highly poisonous but irritatingly appealing to pets.
Pet owners also have to ensure their pet doesn’t overcompensate for the cold weather by burning themselves.
Sarah explains: “Dogs are just like us, on a cold morning all they want is to cosy up near a heat source.
“So make sure to block off any heat source (open fires etc) around your house to prevent your pets from getting burned.”
Pet owners should also keep an eye out for dogs paws when walking on icy pavements, as one unfortunate puppy burned their paws in the frosty weather.
Data from pet insurance company Bought By Many shows that the cost for an insurance claim skyrockets between November and March, with the average cost at around £437.
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