Extreme cold grips southern Alberta for Boxing Day

An extreme cold warning has been issued for every region in the province.

Environment Canada warns temperatures are expected to continue all week

Would it still be fun to ride in a (two-horse) open sleigh in - 25 C weather? These frosty horses are pictured geting ready for their next load of passengers on Boxing Day. (Sandra Gagnon/Radio-Canada)

If you need an excuse to stay inside and be cozy today, Environment Canada has the perfect one for you.

On Tuesday morning, an extreme cold warning was issued for every region in the province with three exceptions: Hinton-Grande Cache, Nordegg and Jasper National Park — where they are expecting a balmy high of –19 C.

By noon, weather warnings had been dropped for regions in the southwest part of the province, but temperatures remained in the low minus 20s to 30s across Alberta.

"Extreme cold warnings are issued when very cold temperatures or wind chill creates an elevated risk to health such as frostbite and hypothermia," Environment Canada's weather warning read.

People in Calgary woke up to temperatures hovering around –30 C this morning. According to Environment Canada's forecast for the region, a high of –19 C is expected for Calgary, with a wind chill of –40 this morning, which will lessen slightly to –30 later this afternoon.

While those kind of temperatures keep many people inside, not all Calgarians were hiding from the weather. 

"It's important for the kids to get outside in the cold during Christmas time," said Peter Turri, who built a backyard snow fort for his children to play in. 

"They're stuck in the house all day long and you need the exercise after watching videos and eating snacks all day long. It's not that bad outside anyways."

Early Tuesday morning, an extreme cold weather warning for all regions in the province except three. By noon, the warning had been lifted for the southwest regions of the province. (Environment Canada)

Environment Canada reminds people to keep their pets in mind when the weather drops to sub-zero temperatures.

"If it's too cold for you to stay outside, it's too cold for your pets to stay outside," the weather warning read.

But at local dog parks, there were still hardy souls and frisky K9s out enjoying the sunshine. 

"I think at home he gets pretty antsy, he gets bored, so as long as you equip him with the proper winter gear, he tends to be okay," said Samuel Quiroja, out walking his dog.

Sarah Malone, also out with her pets, felt the same. 

"The dog needs exercise no matter what the temperature. It's a beautiful day, he can handle it, so I figured why not?"

Cold-related symptoms to watch out for are shortness of breath, chest pain, muscle pain and weakness, numbness and colour change in the fingers and toes.

The cold temperatures are set to last until the end of the week.