View Full Version : how cold is too cold?

12th August 2006, 03:57 AM
Hi guys!

As I was walking Kosmo this morning I came to the stunning realization that winter is just around the corner!! I got some chilly bumps and it's only August!!

Last year he was just a baby and even though the weather was mild, he shook like a leaf when we went outside. This forced me to keep him in my jacket and only put him down for the "business" and promptly scoop him back up. He has more fur now, but he's completely domesticated and I'm worried he'll have a heart attack during this winter as it is FREEZING here for a few months out of the year.

Since he's a complete house dog I am assuming that he won't adjust well to the cold, am I right? And also, because of this, he's going to need a winter coat, right? And at what temperature would I have to put on the jacket? When it's too cold for me?

I live in a new housing development where there is sparse grass and a lot of sidewalk and concrete so far. In the winter they will be putting salt on the sidewalks to melt the snow. I've heard before that salt can actually be damaging to the underpads of the feet, is this right? And is there any other way of protecting the feet from salt than wearing booties? I think he would fight me if I put them on him.

And also does anybody know where I can buy booties in north america at a halfway decent price? These things I have seen are like $50 a pair!!

Sorry for all the questions but I am a rookie and I'de hate for Kosmo to not enjoy our walks because he's freezing to death and uncomfortalbe!

12th August 2006, 04:19 AM
Well the last two mornings its been pretty chilly here in the am and late at night. I was thinking the same thing. I just ordered a puppia hoodie for Sabrina for this fall and winter and am thinking of getting a jacket as well. I found slippers ( bunny and ducky) on ebay. I typed in dog slippers and they were there. Good luck.

Bruce H
12th August 2006, 10:50 AM
Yes, cold can be an issue for these guys. Ours don't seem to mind the cold for the most part until it gets below freezing. That's when we start limiting their time outside. I'm trying to remember now, but I think at freezing they would be good for something like 15 - 20 minutes. But when it got in the -20 F range, they would be out just long enough to do their business. I think he will adjust to the cold gradually, just play it by ear. We have never used jackets, so maybe others can add to this.

For exercise, we do that in the house. Most of them LOVE the laser light so we get that out and run them around the house with it. We also run them up and down the stairs.

You're right about the salt being hard on their feet. The only thing I know of are the booties. We only spent one winter with our first Cavalier where we didn't have a fenced yard. We bought the booties but had a terrible time keeping them on. We ended up shoveling an area out in the yard for her to use. I think I remember others on the board saying they found some that worked fairly well.

Winter can be a challenge, but I'm sure you and Kosmo will do just fine. All this reminded me of our boy Lazer. Lazer has enough coat for 3 dogs and he LOVED winter. Frankly, I think it was the only time he was comfortable. That boy would put his nose down to the ground and run, pushing through the snow like a miniture snowplow. After doing that for a while, he would dig around in the snow a bit, lay down, and go to sleep. So here would be Lazer sleeping in the snow while the rest of the dogs were dancing at the door, wanting to come in :lol: Lazer now lives with a wonderful family just a couple miles from us and hasn't changed a bit!

12th August 2006, 11:47 AM

Lazer sounds just like my Maxx :lol: Have you got any pics of him?

I've never used dog coats but as Maxx is getting older I might get him one this year to keep his back warm as he has SM.

Of course, if Maxx has one, then Charlie also has to have one icon_whistling

If it was below freezing Sara, I think I'd want to put coats and boots on my guys too. Have you looked on Ebay for boots?

Cathy Moon
12th August 2006, 12:13 PM
When India and Geordie were still puppies in winter a few years ago, we did put them in jackets on the very coldest days. We normally don't walk them in the winter, just let them run in the snow in the fenced yard, so I don't put anything on their feet.

There is paw wax for protecting their pads from the salt, which I have used for agility. Petsmart has it in the store during winter, but not during the warmer months:
http://www.petsmart.com/global/product_detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=84552444180 9753&ASSORTMENT%3C%3East_id=2534374302023689&FOLDER%3C%3Efolder_id=2534374302026151&bmUID=1128363830502

Bruce H
12th August 2006, 12:25 PM
Lazer is the tri on the opening page of our website www.mysticknightcavaliers.com

I sure do miss that boy, but had to place him; just can't keep everything. One of the VERY difficult parts of breeding. On the positive side, he comes here every Christmas for a couple weeks while his family are on vacation. Something I really look forward to.

Arasara: It wouldn't hurt to get a coat for those really cold days, but you might be surprised how much better he handles the cold now that his coat has come in. This really is a pretty hardy breed for a basically indoor breed.

12th August 2006, 01:44 PM
Thanks for your replies guys. I might look into getting him a coat while we're in that "freezer" stage of this winter. Also maybe I will cut our walk times in half depending on how he does outside. Thanks for the paw wax idea. I tried to put little sockies on him so he wouldn't scratch at his hernia stitches and he ate one of them within 30 seconds. :yikes He'll be around 1 this winter but his coat is not long yet. We shaved him once because it was so hot outside. I hated it but I am glad that we did it because he was a totally different dog after!!


I hate to admit this but Kosmo is what most people would call a "weiner.." icon_blshing Including our vet. He will even shake while he's waiting with wet hair in the shower. As much as I would LOVE for him to be like lazer, the scenario seems highly unlikely.. lol. I love that name for a dog though.. Maybe I'll put it on my list for my next one.. or two.. or three... icon_whistling

12th August 2006, 03:50 PM
Sara, when Linda's back she will probably reply to this...I'm sure she had some boots for Dudley.

Otherwise you will need to wash his paws and undercarriage every time he's been out on the salted areas...

for other members, it's worth doing this when they have been gritting the roads, as it gets onto the pavement and can make their paws and skin very sore. It's not good for them if they ingest it either

Cathy Moon
12th August 2006, 10:00 PM
Yes, forgot to mention about washing the salt off!

Also, when the temperature goes down to 20 or lower, their feet can suddenly start to freeze up, so please don't walk him too far, and be ready to pick him up and carry him home, he will be crying!

That's why I don't walk them on the very cold days, they just do their business and come inside.