Most dog breeds start to change their coat in autumn. This change from summer coat to winter coat is triggered by the shorter day and is hormonally controlled. The winter coat consists of many curled wool hairs that prevent the body from losing heat quickly.
Even short-haired dogs are not defenseless against the cold. They stand up their hair when it’s cold, creating an air cushion between the hair that retains body heat and keeps cold air out.
Fur care in winter
Dogs should rarely be bathed in winter because washing their hair makes their coat dry, brittle, and therefore brittle. On the other hand, it is important to rinse the paws with lukewarm water after every walk and to check the dog’s pads for skin tears or stuck grit.
Sensitive dogs can be put on so-called “booties”, small paw protectors, as a preventive measure. Greasing the dog’s footpads also protects the dog’s footpads.
Winter jacket for dogs?
Depending on the breed, the dogs normally have a more or less pronounced winter coat. However, since most dogs spend a lot of time with us humans in heated rooms these days, they do not always produce enough undercoats for the winter. Dogs can move and romp freely, but they usually produce enough body heat so that they are not cold.
When dogs tremble and freeze in the cold, the natural protection against the cold is not enough. In these cases, winter clothing for the dog can also be considered. Winter clothing can also prove necessary for dogs with sparse hair, particularly small and short-haired dog breeds, for sick or decrepit dogs.
In any case, the dog clothing should be waterproof on the outside, and sufficiently warm and it should not restrict the dog’s freedom of movement.