5 Ways to Keep Dogs Warm in Winter
Winter can seem especially dreary for dogs, who may look forward to their walks outdoors as a little break from their usual indoor scenery. Even the warmest of regions have chillier nights that can pose a threat to your fur baby.
Photo by Mia Anderson
However, that doesn’t mean winter has to equal discomfort or boredom. Below are five ways to keep your dog warm whether they’ll be taking cover indoors or bracing themselves for the brisk outdoors. Keeping your pup toasty will help protect them from cold weather-related dangers such as illnesses, dry or irritated skin, and frostbite.
Cozy Resting Area
There are a couple of ways to provide your dog a season-appropriate resting nook. Pet-safe heating beds or self-warming beds are a common choice. You might also switch out their “bedding” if they typically sleep on thinner materials such as towels. Consider cozy materials like sherpa or faux fur blankets for added warmth during the cooler months. Be sure to also keep beds away from drafts and near warmer areas of your home like the kitchen.
A full tummy is a warm tummy! Certain foods create more energy, which helps keep the body warm. And even though eating may not seem like much activity, the body is actually doing a lot of behind-the-scenes work to digest consumed food. Therefore, foods that take longer to digest help raise overall body temperature. Feed food that’s high in healthy fats and proteins if you anticipate taking your dog out into the cold.
An indoor dog bathroom is a great addition to your dog’s winter regimen and helps limit their exposure to the cold. While a walk and fresh air is important, sometimes it’s just not practical or safe to go outdoors. But just because the snow is knee-high or it’s raining cats and dogs outside doesn’t mean your pooch has to go without access to a bit of nature. A natural wee wee pad like Bark Potty is a useful alternative to the great outdoors when the weather outside becomes unbearable.
Offer seasonal treats or broth that can be warmed. Either can be used as food toppers during usual meal times or fed as a comforting and warming snack to boost core temperature after a cold outing. Make sure any food or liquids are warm and not hot in order to prevent burning.
Play time is a fun way to get the blood going and the body warmed up! Spend time playing a game of tug or tossing around their favorite toys. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to squeeze in some exercise during the cooler months, when your dog may be less active than usual.